pubspy - westport | 

The West is good and the €4.70 pints are even better in Matt Molloy’s of Westport

It was relatively busy when we called but we did manage to get a table and seats across from the bar and the barman served us without delay.

Matt Molloy's of Westport

Matt Molloy's of Westport is a brilliant boozer

PubspySunday World

Matt Molloy’s – Westport, Co Mayo THE Old Commando has long wondered just how Mayo footballer Lee Keegan manages to get up and down the vast Croke Park pitch for 70-plus minutes without looking jaded or as if he has even broken a sweat.

Following our 500km round trip to Westport, home of the irrepressible Keegan, the Old Commando is even more dumbfounded.

“For all the jeering the Mayo fans get I’ll tell you one thing, they must be the most loyal in the country. To travel from Westport or even further to Croke Park in such large numbers every time they play is incredible. I won’t be the better of that journey for a week,” he said as we arrived in the busy west Mayo town.

We imagine the tourist season will be coming to end shortly or at least slowing down in these parts, but luckily enough, perhaps due to the good weather, the streets were still bustling when Pub Spy and the team arrived recently.

While our troops were searching for somewhere to wet their beaks, the Old Commando had no such time to be wasting and waltzed straight in the front door of Matt Molloy’s pub on Bridge Street.

“It’s a six-hour journey and over 500kms, I’m not spending time walking up and down the street trying to decide which pub looks best,” he joked with our Commandos.

“This lad has Guinness and I have a thirst on me,” he added.

It was relatively busy when we called but we did manage to get a table and seats across from the bar and the barman served us without delay.

Much to our surprise there were no stag parties present but rather a mixture of families with small children, groups of lads in their thirties, the elderly couple perched at the counter together and not talking and the local barfly reading the evening paper.

There are multiple sections in the pub, including a stage area, and there is also a small room which appears to be reserved for musicians who walk in off the street.

We enjoyed our couple of pints and costing €4.70, the stout is a lot cheaper than most places these days.

“I wonder will the Government address the cost of a pint in Tuesday’s budget,” the Young Commando said.

“If they do it would only be to increase it,” the Old Commando replied. “Those boys don’t live in the real world” he said rather angrily.

The old timber barstools, bench seating and timber flooring were all very clean and in keeping with their surroundings and the fridges and shelves were all fully stocked.

We didn’t get to engage with the barman at all during our stay as he was kept very busy but we did observe him and he was very capable at his job.

There are numerous old photos hanging throughout the pub and a framed photo of Kevin McBride fighting the legendary Iron Mike Tyson is signed by the big Irishman himself.

There are also photos of The Chieftains opening this pub in 1989 and of Planxty from around 1978.

There was a very lively atmosphere but people tended to stick to the groups they were in rather than the usual cohort of locals bantering at the bar.

We didn’t notice any TVs in the pub and it seems to be geared more towards performers and live music.

We sent the Young Commando to cast an eye over the toilets and he reported back that they were small with one cubicle and a small stainless steel urinal.

Rating: Four pints out of Five

One for the road…

The Old Grainstore – Westport The young bearded barman on duty was very welcoming to our Commandos and engaged us all in conversation during our stay.

He kept himself busy with a strong work ethic and was very mannerly.

At €4.70 the pints of stout were cheaper than we expected in this busy tourist and stag haven and the Old Commando was more than happy to order a second. There was a decent atmosphere although it wasn’t overly busy and it was nice and relaxing.

The timber flooring looked newer than the barstools and timber bench seating, but they were all in good condition and well maintained.

There are two TVs in the bar and a third TV in a secluded snug area towards the rear. The small toilets were very clean. Rating: Three pints out of Five

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