Pubspy - Mallow, Co Cork | 

O’Keeffe’s bar gave us a warm welcome in mellow Mallow with tasty pints at €4.90

The Old Commando fit in well as he stood placing our order and he received a lovely and warm Cork welcome straight away.

O'Keefe's Bar in Mallow gave us a warm welcome

PubspySunday World

O’Keeffe’s – Mallow, Co Cork

Trips to the rebel county are always met with mixed emotions by our Commandos.

On one hand they love visiting Cork itself but on the other hand they’re not big fans of the six-hour round trip.

The Old Commando however is the exception. He has nowhere else to be only work and the pub and luckily for him, they go hand in hand.

“Cork will do nicely” he said to the troops as we sat in HQ debating what part of the ‘People’s Republic’ to visit. “As far out west as you can” he joked to our designated driver.

We decided to go to Mallow, a town we hadn’t been to since February 2015. It was a wet and miserable day and our travelling party were keen to find a pub, get settled and sample the stout as soon as we arrived.

Our designated driver parked the pub-mobile in one of the local car parks and as we walked towards the town centre we came across O’Keeffe’s pub on Main Street.

“It’ll do me the finest” the Old Commando said as he shook the rain off his umbrella and ran inside for shelter.

There was an elderly male clientele seated towards the end of the counter near the front door and an elderly barman on duty too. The Old Commando fit in well as he stood placing our order and he received a lovely and warm Cork welcome straight away.

“Do you want them few papers?” one local said as he handed him some of the daily newspapers. “You can drop them back when you’re finished,” he continued.

The barman took our order without delay and creamy pints of Guinness cost €4.90 each. Along with the usual drinks there was also Beamish, Murphy’s, Orchard Thieves, Coors and Tuborg available on draught.

We felt at home straight away and while we sat on the opposite side of the room we were still kept in the conversation with the friendly gentlemen sitting at the counter.

There are at least four TVs in this pub and the timber flooring was in superb condition. There is a large amount of seating available throughout the pub and in general it seemed to have been in good condition also.

Each table in the bar contained a bottle of hand sanitizer and there was a lovely photo tribute to the Cork hurling teams from 1941-1944 featuring the late and great Jack Lynch, the 1999 All-Ireland senior winning team and the 1986 All-Ireland senior champions.

“Cork is one of the great GAA counties there’s no doubt about it” the Old Commando discussed with one of the locals.

“Yeah but not at the minute, so when it comes to the football we’ll be relying on ye jackeens to take Sam Maguire away from Killarney. Oh Jaysus, anyone bar that crowd”, he said. Cue rapturous laughter.

It’s not only Gaelic games that are celebrated in O’Keeffe’s however as we noticed a photo of the Munster rugby team from 2008 that faced off versus the All-Blacks in Thomond park. We’re sure some of the locals would have enjoyed the South African match last weekend.

The toilets are located downstairs and while they were clean, we did notice there was no seat on the toilet and this should be rectified without delay.

They’re not expensive but they are essential!

We had a nice time in O’Keeffe’s bar in Mallow where the barman and locals were very welcoming and polite. There was a good atmosphere and the porter wasn’t bad either.

We’ll call again someday. Rating: Three pints out of Five

One for the road…

The Rockforest Bar - Castletownroche

THE Old Commando was content to sit here for the evening as he was enjoying the company of the elderly barman so much. We got a lovely Cork welcome in this boozer and although it was relatively quiet during our stay, we had a really nice time.

Pints of Murphy’s, Carling, Coors and Rockshore are all available on draught and the local GAA club colours are draped from the ceiling behind the counter.

One local assured us they are the Castletownroche colours rather than Kerry’s.

Photographs of the 1998 junior hurling winners are hanging proudly on the back wall and the purple velvet bench seating was in very good condition.

The bar was dimly lit but there was a very cosy atmosphere among the friendly clientele.

The toilets are small and compact, but they were clean and the dryer worked.

Rating: Three pints out of Five

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