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PUBspy – Athboy The Lawrence in Athboy will be perfect when we're allowed sit at the bar again

As our designated driver drove past The Lawrence pub on the main street we told him to pull over, we’d found our watering hole.

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The Lawrence Pub, Athboy, Co Meath

The Lawrence Pub, Athboy, Co Meath

The Lawrence Pub, Athboy, Co Meath

The Lawrence – Athboy, Co. Meath

IS there a county riding a bigger crest of a wave at the moment in GAA circles than the Royal county of Meath?

The Old Commando has a vast collection of memories involving his beloved Dubs and the toughest of the tough men from Meath over the years, and while he enjoys beating them just as much as Kildare, he is longing for the day that Meath are able to compete with the boys in blue once again.

“Maybe the GAA could give them a couple of million a year as well,” the Young Commando sneered from his rear passenger seat.

“Either that or the Leinster council could fix every game in Navan for the next 15 to 20 years,” he continued.

Our Old Commando is too savvy to fall for those jibes but he did praise both Meath minors and ladies footballers on their recent All-Ireland successes.

Only one hour from HQ, where we just recently returned to work, we set off on our journey to Athboy. We were hoping to check a boozer that we’d never been to before and of course we’re continuing our mission to find Ireland’s cheapest pint of stout which currently stands at €4.40 since we got back on the road in August.

As our designated driver drove past The Lawrence pub on the main street we told him to pull over, we’d found our watering hole. None of our Commandos can recall ever being to this pub before and as we stepped inside the front door the Old Commando thought he’d found heaven.

“Oh this is right up my street,” he said as he looked along the old styled saloon bar. The counter is little over 20 feet long and it is extremely narrow.

“Would you gentlemen like to take a seat outside?” the young barmaid asked us as soon as we arrived.

We had no desire to sit outside, as we’ve always said, Ireland is not built for outdoor dining. We couldn’t sit in the main bar area which we assume was down to size restrictions or perhaps being too close to the counter, but we were afforded seating in the adjoining room just off the main bar area which contained just six tables.

It was relatively quiet with only a handful of customers and we placed our order with the young barmaid on duty. We waited patiently for our pints to arrive and after ten minutes or more they finally did.

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We couldn’t fault the taste or presentation and the Young Commando sung the praises of the young barmaid with a Yanky accent — but the price of €5 knocked us for six.

“That’s the most expensive pint we’ve drank since we got back on the road,” the Old Commando stuttered.

A Meath flag is draped along the window and the yellow coloured bench seating was in good condition. There was no TV in this section but there were speakers piping in a radio station. The fireplace was full of turf and so was the wicker basket placed beside it. They serve food in this pub but we weren’t hungry during our stay.

While the front bar and adjoining room are very much the old style public house, the hallway to the toilet and the toilets themselves are certainly more modern. Both were spacious and clean and in general the pub was spick and span.

We felt we didn’t get the best this pub has to offer due to the current Covid-19 restrictions. The Old Commando would have loved to have sat at the counter while the Young Commando reserved special praise for the barmaid who served him.

Just to be clear, we’re not faulting the pub, just the situation under these current Government restrictions.

Rating: Three pints out of five

One for the Road...

The Waxie Dargle – Athboy

NORMALITY has resumed for the patrons of this Co Meath boozer. That was the impression our Commandos got during their recent visit.

There was an all male clientele and while we didn’t get involved with any of the locals, there was a lively atmosphere. A friendly blonde barmaid served us and we sat away from the counter in a separate section where there’s a pool table and two gaming machines.

We noticed two TVs, one of which was turned off and the other which nobody was watching. One customer was hogging the poker machine at the end of the counter while the jukebox was entertaining us with some good music.

The toilets were tight for space with two cubicles and a ceramic urinal. Overall, we couldn’t fault our visit.

Rating: Three pints out of five

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