This is the week that I find myself craving that perfectly poured Guinness. And not poured by just anyone, but by a curly-haired bartender with a gleam in his eye, an adorable accent and a name like Sean or Declan. If you find yourself looking for more “grown-up” festivities for St. Patrick’s Day, then look no further than Downtown Greenville, where there is music and merriment and St. Paddy’s parties abound!

Want to immerse yourself completely in the Irish beverage experience, but unsure of which one to try? Then let The Greenville Beer Exchange tutor you on that subject. As part of their weekly free beer tastings, GBX will be introducing beer lovers to all the wonderful beers, ales and stouts that hail from the Emerald Isle this Thursday, the 14th. The tasting begins at 5PM and continues until 7PM. Like some of the beer you’ve sampled? Then you may want to take home a growler of your favorite to share with your friends (or keep all to yourself)! For more info, visit

On Friday, March 15th, Sharkey’s Pub asks “Who’s Your Paddy?” This ever-popular, annual Bar Bus Tour will visit at least 6 of Greenville’s friendliest drinking establishments (and maybe more) to allow revelers to celebrate St. Paddy’s in style! Festivities start at 6:15PM at Sharkey’s Pub and the bus rolls out from there. This pub crawl includes t-shirts and door prizes that’ll have you dancing an Irish jig (or if that doesn’t, the drink specials certainly will)! The cost is $20 in advance / $25 the day of the pub crawl. To register and for details, visit

Saturday, March 16th, will see a plethora of St. Patrick’s parties taking place Downtown. Wild Wing Café invites you to revisit the ‘80’s with everyone’s favorite flashback band, Retro Vertigo! With a play list that is certain include everything from Van Morrison to U2, you can find yourself transported back to the time of Bono’s “uber-mullet”. For info, call 242-9453. The Velo Fellow celebrates Ireland’s patron saint with drink specials on Murphy’s Irish Stout and Irish Car Bombs, a wondrous thing called “Pudding Shots” for $1 and an Irish-themed menu that includes such amazing food items as Irish nachos and corned beef plates. Top that off with a musical performance by local bluegrass band, BearWallow, and you have a celebration that even St. Pat himself would enjoy! For details, call 242-9296. Chicora Alley’s festivities are not only a nod to Greenville’s Celtic roots, but a birthday bash for two of her favorite local musicians, Jef Chandler and Jeff Buchanan, as well! Jef & Jeff, together with fellow musician, Brian Buffalo, invite you to don your green apparel and join them for all the fun! Call 232-4100 to find out more.

Not Downtown, but nearby, are two excellent pubs in which to raise a pint to toast the Emerald Isle. The Irish Pub, located on Pleasantburg – and owned and operated by an Irish guy named Patrick (really!) – throws the grandaddy of all Irish parties, so big that it takes up the entire weekend! With live Irish music, complete with pipers and step dancers, and authentic Irish beer, stout & ale, this party celebrates all things Irish (hey, even the bartenders are Irish)! The fun starts Saturday, the 16th and continues until Patrick throws everyone out. Then it all starts up again on Sunday, the 17th! Not to be outdone, Fitzpatrick’s Irish Pub on Laurens Road invites you to their St. Patty’s DAZE. Starting Thursday, March 14th and continuing through the 16th, and offering food and drink specials, door prizes and live music, this event and this pub are definitely worth checking out!

Although, one of Downtown’s favorite St. Patrick’s events, The Blarney Bash, will not be happening this year, Greenville offers many ways to get your Irish on! So, pull on that “Kiss Me I’m Irish” t-shirt and your shamrock sunglasses, dye your hair green and head Downtown to Party with St. Paddy! But, however you decide to celebrate, have fun and be safe! Erin Go Braugh!


Are you a beer drinker who would love to have the chance to try something other than Bud Light or PBR? Are you a wine drinker who desires a chance to sample wine from around the world? Well, my fellow imbibers, Downtown Greenville offer several chances to take a “spirited” tour of the world…sip by sip!

Drinking wine is considered by most to be a very sophisticated and refined past time and it’s this perception that can make becoming a wine drinker seem a bit intimidating. Whether you are a seasoned wine connoisseur or a “wine-curious newbie”, Northampton Wines offers wine lovers of all types the chance to sample products from wine regions around the world. Every Friday evening from 6:30-7:30PM and Saturday afternoons from 4PM until 5:15PM, this restaurant and wine café, located on East Broad Street, conducts tastings of a variety of vino. This weekend, visitors have the opportunity to experience a selection of Cabernet Sauvignon from California and Washington State, with guidance from wine expert, Richard deBondt. As space is limited to 40 people, reservations are required.  Freshly baked bread from The Restaurant and a selection of cheeses are served during these events. For more information, visit

Another Downtown establishment that offers an occasion to delve in the delights of wine is West End Wine & Spirits. With wine tastings every Thursday from 5PM to 8PM (and an occasional beer tasting), this South Main establishment allows visitors a chance to sip wine in an atmosphere that is both upscale and laid-back. They even have monthly Wine Trivia! For details on events, visit:

A Downtown business that offers the chance to sample the unique in both wine and beer is The Community Tap. Owner/Operator, Mike Okupinski, opened this North End establishment with the simple intent to provide good beer and wine in an atmosphere that is casual and inviting. Regulars to the unassuming building located on Wade Hampton, near Stone Avenue, agree that TCT is a welcome addition to Greenville’s beer culture. With offerings of their diverse selection of beer and wine, tastings are often filled to capacity, so reservations are sometimes required. Upcoming events include tastings of Sour and Wild Ales (together with a selection of cheeses) on Wednesday, July 18th , 6:30-7:30PM and a “Wine Holiday” sampling of wines from Southern France on Wednesday, July 25th, also 6:30-7:30PM. For more information on these and other events at The Community Tap, visit:

Another contender in the beer tasting category is the Greenville Beer Exchange.  Located just off Main Street on South Laurens Street, word of GBE has quickly spread among beer lovers in the area. With a selection of unique beers and pilsners with fun names like “Golden Monkey” and “Good Chit”, their Thursday Tastings (which are 5-7PM & usually free) are popular with the Downtown “after-work” crowd. For more info and a list of what’s currently on tap, visit:

Downtown Greenville gives beer and wine lovers alike to try something a little different from their usual. Some of these events are free, some have a cost attached or other restrictions, so it’s best to call ahead. A word of advice, it’s easy to get caught up in the excitement of trying new varieties of your favorite alcoholic beverage, so be cautious about how much you drink. Many tastings have “spit buckets” available and others serve hor d’oeuvres in an attempt to prevent “over-consumption”. If you have had too much to drink, please take a cab home. For daily listings of these and other fun Downtown events, visit the Downtown Greenville, SC Facebook Page at

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