Pubspy - Charleville, Co. Cork | 

Friendly barmaid and chatty locals made our visit to J.R. O’Connor’s in Charleville a treat

The creamy pints of Guinness cost €5.30 and the young barmaid told us that the Murphy’s, a far more popular stout here in the People’s Republic of Cork, also costs €5.30.

creamy pints of Guinness cost €5.30 in O'Connor's of Charleville

J.R. O’CONNOR’S – Charleville, Co. Cork

OUR new electric Pub-mobile has certainly been testing its battery life lately and it was forced into overdrive again this week with a two-and-a-half-hour journey from headquarters to Charleville on the Cork-Limerick border.

This was our first visit to the Rebel county in 2023 and the Old Commando estimates it may be 15 years since he was in Charleville.

“I couldn’t tell you when I was last here,” he said as our designated driver parked our wagon on the main street.

“It must ten or 12 years, more even, 15 years perhaps since I was down this neck of the woods – but sure it’s nice to see somewhere new for the rest of you lads,” he continued.

The senior hurling championship is well under way this year and the Old Commando couldn’t wait to speak to the locals about today’s game against another All-Ireland contender, Clare.

We decided to visit J.R. O’Connor’s pub and we were so grateful that we did. We received a very warm welcome from the lovely barmaid named Kate who was on duty and she took our order without delay. She made conversation with us while we waited on our round of drinks and we even managed to get a table beside the bar.

“Another good idea from the Covid era,” the Young Commando said. “Saves all the queuing doesn’t it?”

The creamy pints of Guinness cost €5.30 and the young barmaid told us that the Murphy’s, a far more popular stout here in the People’s Republic of Cork, also costs €5.30.

There is a Mór Gin and Franklin tonic available for €6 and they also have a variety of options on draught such as Coors, Birra Moretti and Rockshore.

It was a predominately middle-aged male clientele during our stay and the Old Commando was very content mixing with the locals discussing the potentially titanic clash with the Banner County this weekend.

The general consensus was that both teams will fancy their chances of taking Liam MacCarthy from Limerick this summer.

“Eighteen years is far too long for us to have not an All-Ireland. Ah no, we’ll do it this year that’s for sure,” one confident Rebel stated.

The bar is dimly lit but it appears to be very clean, while the timber flooring and brown leather barstools and bench seating are all in good condition.

The frosted front windows of the pub have the words ‘Heineken Cup champions’ etched into them and there were plenty of happy Munster fans in the bar too following the big victory over Leinster last weekend.

While we were close to the Limerick border, we were surprised to see such a collection of Limerick GAA memorabilia on display in a Cork pub.

A framed Limerick jersey is hanging on the wall as well a team photograph of the 2018 hurlers who lifted the Liam MacCarthy cup.

There’s a photograph of the Ahane hurling team from 1998 that won the Limerick senior championship. We didn’t notice any Cork material.

A sign at the door advises that this boozer is ‘Over 23s’ and the Old Commando said if he owned a pub he’d increase that to 33 at least and to try to keep as many snowflakes as possible out of his eyeline while he enjoys his pint of Guinness.

There is a large screen TV in the bar and also a projection screen and plenty of the locals were watching the horse racing.

The Young Commando inspected the toilets and reported back that everything was in good working order.

We drank a few more pints while enjoying Kate’s company and that of the locals before bidding farewell to Charleville. Hopefully we won’t leave it as long for our next visit to the town, but we really enjoyed our stay in O’Connor’s and we will certainly call again some day.

Rating: Four pints out of Five

One for the road…

Geary’s - Charleville, Co. Cork

WE got the impression we were going to be visiting an old-style boozer when we arrived at the front door of Geary’s pub, but the interior couldn’t have been any different than we expected.

This is a very classy bar with very nice furnishings, a friendly barmaid and a mixed clientele ranging from middle-aged to elderly.

The velvet covered barstools were all in good shape and plentiful and there are a variety of drinks available on draught such as Rockshore lager and cider, Murphy’s, Birra Moretti and Guinness Zero.

The brick fireplace is a nice feature at the end of the counter and we noticed that they were selling gift cards as well, although presumably for meals rather than porter.

Beer vouchers would be a nice present, however, given the current extortionate prices Irish customers are being charged.

Rating: Four pints out of Five

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