Food & DrinkPub Spy

Pub Spy tips you off on some top pubs in Tipp

Murphy's of Templemore is a popular pub
Murphy's of Templemore is a popular pub

The team hit the Premier County and find to Tipp-top pints.

Murphy's, Templemore

MARCH 28, 2004. This was the last time Pub Spy  paid a visit to Templemore. It was the day before the smoking ban arrived in Ireland and changed all our lives. 

Although when we think back to that particular visit the locals in Templemore were far from pleased with the new regulations that were just hours away from becoming law.

We can vividly remember the clouds of smoke that greeted us on that occasion.

This time we arrived in Templemore in just under two hours and found the safest parking spot in the town, right outside the garda station on Main Street. 

“It’s surely safe there,” our designated driver said. “It’ll hardly get stolen outside a garda station,” he joked.

“Don’t worry if it does. There’s a whole college full of gardai just down the road so they won’t be short of help in looking for it,” the Old Commando replied.

We crossed the street and entered Murphy’s bar where we were greeted by a terrific smell of food. It was very busy when we called and there were as many folks dining as there were people enjoying their drinks. 

We managed to secure some seats at the counter and after a few moments we were served by a young barmaid. She took our order and kept on the move so we didn’t get to engage her in any conversation. The bar was well stocked and there were plenty of options available on draught. 

The notions of pints of Franciscan Well and the local red ale ‘White Gypsy Ruby’ were flirted with but in the end our Old Commando came for one thing and one thing only, stout. 

He paid just €4.20 for the privilege and he gave the thumbs up after his first mouthful. The brown leather barstools were in good condition and we noticed how clean the tiled and timber floors were.

There was a mixed clientele and plenty of couples in for an evening meal with their children. The Young Commando noticed there was a special offer on kiddie’s meals with a main meal, a drink and a desert for €6.

“I wonder would I pass for a child?” the Young Commando joked as he read the menu.

“It’s highly unlikely,” the Old Commando hit back. “We’re going to have to rename you our middle-aged Commando shortly,” he said with a grin, as he passed him a packet of peanuts. “They may do you for now”.

There is a large solid fuel stove located on the far side of the bar and we felt it was a strange location for it. It was throwing out great heat. 

We counted at least three TVs in the bar but the customers weren’t paying much attention to any of them. 

The Old Commando was admiring the Tipperary hurling photos from the famous teams of 1991, 2001 and more recently 2010 when he saw a photo that really stood out.

It was the 2011 Tipperary minor football team which defeated Dublin 3-9 to 1-14 in the All-Ireland football final and ended a 77-year wait for a second minor title.

“There were a couple of young lads on it from Templemore,” one customer informed him. “And one of the selectors hailed from here too,” he added.

The Old Commando said it was a great win for all involved in GAA,  even if it did mean defeat for his beloved Dubs and he praised the great work that has been done in underage football in Tipperary over the past few years.

Our Young Commando made the first trip to the toilets and he reported back to us that they were spotless.  

We couldn’t find too many faults with Murphy’s pub in Templemore and we’ll certainly call in again some time in the not-too-distant future. 


Harrahills, Templemore

IT was relatively quiet when Pub Spy and the team dropped in to Harrahill’s bar in Templemore but it gave us an opportunity to speak with the barmaid and the handful of locals who were sitting at the bar.

The barmaid was friendly and very welcoming, as were the elderly male clientele who were glued to the horse racing on TV. We thoroughly enjoyed their company and the

Old Commando was thrilled with the terrific country welcome we received. They shared tips and even backed a winner or two.

We liked the brown leather swivel barstools, while the red velvet bench seating was plentiful. The bar was well stocked and the counter top was spotlessly clean. There are two TVs in the bar and the Young Commando cast an eye over the toilets before we departed. He advised us they were perfectly fine. 

The red and blue exterior was in good condition. Harrahill’s is basic but it does the job.


Philip O’Rourke, Roscrea

THERE were two barmen on duty in O’Rourke’s pub during our stay and both were friendly and seemed to be really enjoying themselves. They spoke to everyone and carried drinks to everyone’s tables. It was a great atmosphere and these two men were contributing positively. 

It was a predominately male clientele but the Young Commando noticed two beautiful ladies at the end of the bar adding a touch of glamour to the place. 

The bar was very clean and there is a large solid fuel stove near the TV. It didn’t appear to be lit however as some customers were resting their pints of stout on it.

There is a games room in the rear section of the pub with a pool table, a jukebox, a TV and a dart board. 

The toilets are small but they were very clean. 

We really enjoyed our visit to O’Rourke’s and we’ll be sure to call again soon.


The Temple Bar, Templemore

THE Commando’s always enjoy drinking in Dublin’s Temple Bar and would do it more often if they could afford it. Luckily enough they found a ‘Temple Bar’ that is affordable and it was just as lively as the one in our nation’s capital.

It was an all-male clientele in this pub when we called and there wasn’t a spare seat to be found in the first section of the bar. We sat in the second section of the pub and soaked up the terrific atmosphere. The barman was very friendly and he  engaged all his customers as they watched the live sports on TV.

We counted two TVs in total and towards the rear of the pub there is a pool table, a dart board and an old school jukebox.

The toilets were quite small and a little whiffy,  but apart from that we enjoyed our time there. It’s the ideal place for escaping the wife  - or the husband.