#45 of 131 Pensacola Beach Restaurants

McGuire’s Irish Pub

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McGuire’s Irish Pub in Pensacola – Big Portions, Strong Drinks, Plenty of Spirit
Local Expert's Rating:
4.5 / 5
The Bottom Line:

Around for decades, McGuire’s Irish Pub evokes a throwback New York City Irish saloon in ambience, menu, and mood for Pensacola locals and out-of-towners. The portions are huge, the drinks stiff, and the vibe lively—and the place is open till 2 AM or so every day!

- The FloridaPanhandle.com Local Expert Team

Established in 1977 and moved to its current digs in the historic Pensacola firehouse in 1982, McGuire’s Irish Pub has a devoted crowd of regulars, including out-of-towners who make it a pilgrimage when passing through the area. Open each day for lunch, dinner, and “Night Owl” munching until the wee hours of the morning, McGuire’s also serves a popular Sunday brunch and hosts regular live music and other entertainment.

Before we get into the grub, let’s talk liquid nourishment, which as you’d expect flows prodigiously at McGuire’s. The establishment serves its own house-brewed beer; McGuire’s Craft Brewery, in fact, ranks as the oldest in the Sunshine State. There’s also the 8,000-bottle-strong Sweet Molly McGuire Wine Cellar, which has been recognized with a whole slew of Wine Spectator Awards of Excellence. That impressive wine list is, needless to say, not something you’d expect in every old Irish pub. 

Meanwhile, the many cocktails at McGuire’s have plenty of oomph about them—not least the legendary Irish Wake, served in a souvenir jar and most definitely a strap-into-your-seat kind of drink.

Whether an Irish wake, a McGuire’s ale, or a glass of fine wine is your poison of choice, you’ve got a heavy-duty menu to choose from in the eats department. Lunch and dinner appetizers include traditional Irish Boxtys—flash-fried garlic mashed potatoes in bread crumbs—as well as Blue Angel Chips, Irish Cockles & Mussels, and the intriguing Reuben Eggroll.

McGuire’s Irish Pub menu churns out plenty of other old-school Emerald Isle favorites. Including Corned Beef & Cabbage, Shepherd’s Pie, and an Authentic Irish Lamb Stew. But the pub is also known for its steaks, grilled over a hickory fire. Plus various sandwiches, wraps, a nice selection of salads, and some great soups. There are also a variety of seafood dishes (including Fish & Chips), plus such pasta plates as Shrimp Scampi Alfredo and a Wood Fired Chicken & Wild Mushroom Pasta.

Little diners at McGuire’s Irish Pub have the kid-specific “Leprechaun’s Menu” at their fingertips. With offerings such as “MacRoni-n-Cheese” and Flanagan’s Corn Dogs.

For dessert, McGuire’s serves up such decadence. Lucky Chocolate à la Mode and Homemade Bread Pudding with Bushmills Irish Whiskey Sauce (but of course).

How about that Sunday brunch? Well, many attendees go for the Irish Coffee Brunch option. It pairs a frozen or hot Irish coffee with homemade New Orleans-style beignets. You can also tuck into omelets, Benedicts, Belgian waffles, or bagels with lox, to name some other treats—washed down, perhaps, by a Bloody Mary or a bottomless mimosa.

Portion sizes at McGuire’s Irish Pub are famously hefty. So depending on your appetite you’ll often be leaving here with leftovers.

Let’s put the spotlight on a few highlights of the McGuire’s Irish Pub menu:

Senate Bean Soup
This one would catch your eye for the price alone: a cool 18 cents. On account that’s how much the same soup cost in the U.S. Senate cafeteria back in 1977 (when the original McGuire’s opened). But it’s also mighty tasty, making it an all-around steal of a deal.

Shepherd’s Pie
McGuire’s Irish Pub does right by the noble shepherd’s pie. It happens to be one of Rolling Stones guitarist Keith Richards’ go-to meals, and he’s about as cool as they come. This hearty ground steak casserole is packed with fresh veggies and topped with Irish potatoes and cheddar. It is then baked to an irresistible golden brown. A winner.

Grilled Hickory Prime Rib Steak
McGuire’s Irish Pub prides itself on its steak cuts, and the 16-oz. prime rib—hickory-smoked and then grilled over a hickory-wood fire—lives up to the hype.

McGuire’s Irish Red Ale
The first beer the McGuire Craft Brewery whipped up is still the flagship at the pub. A malty brew set at an easy-drinking 4.5% ABV. (Besides enjoying from the tap at McGuire’s Irish Pub, you can nab the Irish Red Ale in bottled form.

Insider Tip:
McGuire’s Irish Pub can get very busy and very loud. Know what to expect when you come here—especially on a weekend night. It’s a very good idea to put yourself on the waitlist via the pub’s website.