FROM Tokyo and Moscow to Seoul and Boston, every year the world unites on March 17, for a massive bevy to celebrate St Patrick’s Day, a fun-filled festival of gaudy green silliness. As we all know Glaswegians and the Scottish community worldwide, love a right good perty, however, our city’s connection to the Emerald Isle, goes back hundreds of years. Before we start pouring the good stuff, here’s how it all came about…

With St. Patricks day approaching we thought we’d have a quick recap over some of the musts for this oh so boozy and shamrock filled holiday! On yersel’ Patrick.

The History

Let’s all join together in a throwback to our school days, more specifically the history lessons we never really paid much attention to. To make it simple we’ve broken up all the info you need to know into a few lines.

Tah Dah – St Patrick is the Sacred Saint of Ireland, and it’s believed he chased all of the snakes out of Ireland and introduced Christianity to the Emerald Isle. This is where the Shamrock kicks in, legend has it that St. Patrick used the three-leaved shamrock to explain the Christian Holy Trinity to Ireland.

Irish immigration to Scotland was part of a well-established feature of early 19th-century life in Ireland: the annual harvest migration. Years later, due to famine, persecution and other circumstances in Ireland, immigration was necessary. Although America was a very tempting destination for many, Britain, due to its geographic proximity would be the first choice of a considerable number of Irish immigrants since Scotland was Ireland’s closest neighbour (only 13 miles separate the two countries at one point), it was an obvious choice of destination.

To this date Glasgow’s very own Royston, Gorbals, Govanhill and Calton areas, to name but a few, still have close tie-ins with Ireland and particularly Donegal. Govanhill was know locally, for a while as “Little Ireland”. The Irish began to arrive in Glasgow in large numbers around the 1830’s. In 1848 it’s said that more than 1,000 Irish people travelled here each week – escaping the famine and seeking employment. The strong tie-ins between Govanhill and Donegal still exist to this day with the holiday bus service which still running between the two towns!


Guinness…. or any other type of tipple!

We have to start with the St. Paddy’s s day staple – GUINNESS. In traditional form, this would be consumed in copious amounts on this given day in memory of St Patrick himself. However, if you’re not a Guinness fan (really!?) then a simple half pint will suffice. Sloans, Malones or Waxy’s are amongst some of the best spots in town to get a good pint of the magic black stuff! Or if it’s a few at home you’re after, remember to tilt the glass at 45 degrees when pouring until it is three-quarters full, then let the beer settle before filling the glass completely to the top for the perfect pour. Enjoy.

Image: Dressing the Part

This usually involves green attire of some sort, you know what we’re talking about… often shamrocks, leprechaun outfits and fake Irish accents are involved. Last year we saw a giant potato stating about so remember whatever you wear this year you will look better than that guy!


Up the Dancing!

Ceilidh, Irish, river… whatever takes yer fancy! After a few, they’ll all blend into something resembling dad dancing. Either way, get up on the floor and get involved. Sloan’s often throw a really good Ceilidh or the Park Bar in the West End, has been knows to raise a few cold ones. “To Arthur..”


The Humble Spud

Before the almighty St Paddy’s session, it’s usually a good idea to line the stomach with a large fry. An Ulster fry is ideal if you can hunt one down amongst Glasgow fine eateries, but worry not our Scottish breakfast more than matches this. In fact, how could Ireland not include square sausage in the lineup!? For dinner, spuds and mince or a big pot of traditional stew is a good route to go! Malones  at 57-59 Sauchiehall Ln offer special Clonakilty Full Irish, with a side of great craic…

Mini Grill Glasgow have created a special appetising St Patrick’s Day burger inspired by the Emerald Isle. More celebratory tipples and tasty treats incoming! Sláinte…