This Week’s Eats takes us up north of the Mason Dixon the historic Civil War town of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania and the authentically awesome Garryowen Irish Pub.
Tucked away on quiet Chambersburg Street in historic downtown Gettysburg, Pennsylvania the Garryowen Irish Pub offers an authentic take on the British/Irish pub dining experience… Just a stones throw away from the famous Gettysburg battlefield which memorializes one of the bloodiest battles ever fought on American soil, this quiet eatery offers good service, great food and a terrifically easy-going and family-friendly dining environment equally attractive to tourists and locals alike.
Upon walking up to the Garryowen we were immediately struck with just how authentic to England or Ireland the location really is, the weather worn historical building looks and feels authentic, the sort of place that is as at home here in America as it might be in someplace far flung like the shambles of York in the UK. A public house by every definition the entryway is adorned with the appropriate signage and the entrance is at once low-key and inviting…just the way they do it across the pond. A pub is not a bar and it’s not a sports-bar, despite popular American misnomers…rather they are warm, inviting and hospitable places were a family can spend an evening eating, talking and partaking in the libations of their choice. A pub is not a rushed dining experience, rather it’s just that…a dining experience. Camaraderie is king here just as it should be and even upon finding our way here at a decently late hour we were at once made to feel welcome and encouraged to sit back, relax and enjoy the pub with our fellow pub denizens for the evening.
Open late, great fresh, authentic and often locally sourced food, an ample array of libations and a broad reaching schedule of local musical talents…what more can anyone ask for in a pub? We were seated at a comfortable corner table and quickly given menus to look over. Our waiter offered the specials and even gave us a little background on the pub and the band playing that night; perfect service if we’ve ever seen it. The ambiance inside is casual and vintage, the sort of time worn but not shabby dining room that promotes conversation and comfort. Our waiter was top notch and the kitchen staff had everything out and to our table in short order.
The Garryowen offers a wide array of traditional Irish fare, including local favorites like Shepard’s Pie, Guinness Beef Stew, Bangers and Mash, traditional Ulster Fry and a most excellent Irish Onion Soup. On this chilly spring evening my wife and I opted to try the Shepard’s Pie, Bangers and Mash and a shared bowl of the house specialty Irish Onion Soup. Everything we tried was excellent (particularly the Guinness infused Irish Onion Soup!) and true to the descriptions on the Garryowen’s menu everything was prepared fresh and with unique individual flare easily attributable to the proprietors Kevin & Joanne McCready both originally hailing from County Armag’h, Ireland. Quite simply it just doesn’t get any more authentically Irish here in the new world than in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania’s very own Garryowen Irish Pub.