On the yearly calendar of national events, there is one holiday that stands out from all the rest. It's St. Patrick's Day, when those with the smallest amount of Irish heritage still lay claim to a certain taste of the Emerald Isle.
And a hearty taste it is.
St. Patty's Day food is best represented by corned beef or ham with cabbage, liberally garnished with carrots and plenty of potatoes. The potato is sometimes served in the form of a soup or appears liberally spread over the top of a shepherd's pie, and may then return at the end of the meal in a somewhat sweetened form.
Lamb or beef stew is seen on menus frequently and is sometimes all gussied up as a rack of lamb or dressed down, closer to a burger. Lest we forget that Ireland is an island, salmon and other seafood may also appear on the table.
Such hearty fare requires a hearty beverage and local pubs have plenty of choice dark beers on tap or in the bottle.
This year, with St. Patrick's Day falling on a Sunday, the calendar has given us the gift of time, with many restaurants choosing to celebrate for three consecutive days. That allows Irishmen everywhere plenty of time to take advantage of the food and drink we all love so well.
Cattle 'n Clover, 3817 Pacific Ave., Wildwood, 609-522-3800. Celebrate the restaurant's first birthday and St. Patrick's Day all weekend. Friday, March 15, is a birthday bash with live entertainment at 6 p.m., a free dessert with every entree purchase, free giveaways, 32-ounce Birthday Beer ($4) and a free buffet from 10 p.m. to midnight. Saturday, March 16, will feature a 5k Cattle Drive, which begins with registration at 8:30 a.m. Kegs 'n Eggs post-race breakfast begins at 10:30 a.m. $25 entrance fee includes T-shirt, breakfast and weekend pass to St. Patrick's Day block party. The second annual St. Patrick's Day Block Party begins 11 a.m. Partygoers 13 and older can purchase a two-day event wristband ($15) with T-shirt and unlimited soft drinks for kids, free balloon twisters, face painters and a giant bounce house. There will be live entertainment all day. On Sunday, March 17, the party begins at 10:30 a.m. with a second helping of Kegs 'n Eggs. A one-day discounted wristband can be purchased ($10) to include T-shirt, breakfast and free soda for kids, with live entertainment all day. Tented event - rain or shine.
Fitzpatrick's Deli and Steakhouse, 650 New Road, Somers Point, 609-653-8155. Traditional Irish holiday meal served through Sunday, March 17. Lunch: corned beef and cabbage served with carrots and red bliss potatoes, $11.95. Dinner: Irish potato soup, corned beef and cabbage served with carrots and red bliss potatoes plus Irish soda bread, $16.95 per person.
Revel, 500 Boardwalk, Atlantic City, 855-348-0500. Revel Pub Crawl 2 p.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday, March 16, and noon to 8 p.m. Sunday, March 17. Wristband from Revel Box Office ($49) or through Ticketmaster.com ($45 plus fees). Receive a St. Patrick's Day-themed cocktail, beer, treat or Voss water at 10 participating restaurants and retailers. Pub Crawlers receive complimentary admission to Ivan Kane's Royal Jelly Burlesque Nightclub. The Crawl, Sleep, Eat Package is offered for $259 for one night only on Sunday, March 17, and includes two tickets to the "St. Patty's Day Pub Crawl," an ocean (king) room, late checkout and $50 food and beverage credit to be used at SkyCafe, Alcove or in-room dining. Designated pub crawl stops: Amada, green sangria; Central Michel Richard, Irish cactus cocktail or Irish lamb slider; Distrito Cantina, Luckyrita; Lugo Cucina e Vino, Green Peroni; Mussel Bar and Grille, car bomb trifle or Screamin' Leprechaun; Ultra Lounge, Citrus Shamrock; Village Whiskey, Irish Punch; The Row and Emporium, Lucky Leprechaun cupcakes and Voss water hydration stations; Luke's Kitchen & Marketplace, lucky limoncello shot or pistachio gelato-filled cannoli; The Social, Dublin after dark with Jameson, creme de menthe and Bailey's. Must be 21 years of age with valid picture ID.
Ducktown Tavern and Liquors, 2400 Atlantic Ave., Atlantic City, 609-449-1212. After the Boardwalk parade, the block party 3 p.m. to 11 p.m. Food includes hot dogs ($3), burgers ($5) and chicken sandwiches ($5). Drink specials: Bud light drafts ($3), Guinness or Murphy's stouts ($4), car bombs ($5), Fireball or Jameson's shots ($4). Entertainment by a DJ and multiple appearances by the SandPipers.
Scarduzio's Steak/Sushi/Lounge, Showboat, Atlantic City, 877-346-4642. Celebrating St. Patrick's Day 5:30 to 11 p.m. Saturday, March 16, and 5:30 to 9 p.m. Sunday, March 17. Trio of green-inspired sushi rice rolls: shell fish roll, tuna roll, himachi roll ($24).
Caesars Atlantic City, 2100 Pacific Ave., Atlantic City, 609-348-4411. On Saturday and Sunday, March 16 and 17, Cafe Roma will feature corned beef and cabbage and Irish potato bread pudding ($24.99). At Toga Bar enjoy Guinness ($5) and Jameson ($6) specials.
6ix Bistro, Bally's, 1900 Pacific Ave., Atlantic City, 609-340-2000. On Saturday and Sunday, March 16 and 17, enjoy frittatas ($12.75) or corned beef and cabbage with Irish potato pancake and potato barley soup ($18).
Mountain Bar, Bally's, 1900 Pacific Ave., Atlantic City, 609-340-2000. On Saturday and Sunday, March 16 and 17, enjoy Jameson shots ($2) and Guinness drafts ($3).
The Windjammer Diner Bar Grille, 18 MacArthur Blvd., Somers Point, 609-365-8056. St. Patrick's specials run Friday through Sunday, March 15 through 17. shepherd's pie ($13.99); corned beef or ham ($14.99) with bacon-braised cabbage and red bliss potatoes; roasted leg of lamb ($15.99) with roasted root vegetables and roasted garlic mashed potatoes.
Atlantic City Country Club, 1 Leo Fraser Dr., Northfield, 609-236-4411. On Sunday, March 17, Irish specials will be included at brunch, served 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. for $29.95 per person. shepherd's pie, lamb stew, and corned beef and cabbage. Corned beef and cabbage specials also will be featured at lunch March 21, 22 and 23.
FIN, Tropicana, 2831 Boardwalk, Atlantic City, 1-800-345-8767. On Saturday and Sunday, March 16 and 17, enjoy a three-course St. Patrick's Day special. First course: FIN's house salad with sweet-and-sour-roasted garlic balsamic vinaigrette or traditional Caesar salad. Second course: herb-crusted rack of lamb with cabbage, roasted fingerling potatoes and garlic-stout demi. Third course: Bailey's mousse torte. $58 per person plus tax and gratuity. On Friday, March 15, through Sunday, try Killian's and Guinness bottles ($5).
Seaside Cafe, Tropicana, 2831 Boardwalk, Atlantic City, 1-800-345-8767. On Sunday, March 17, the cafe will offer a three-course corned beef and cabbage dinner with choice of soup or salad and dessert ($18.99).
Congress Hall, 251 Beach Ave., Cape May, 609-884-8421. Irish food available in The Boiler Room and Blue Pig Tavern all weekend, 5 to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday, March 15 and 16, Blue Pig only 5 to 9 p.m. Sunday, March 17. Boiler Room closed Sunday. Traditional corned beef and cabbage ($18); shepherd's pie with spiced minced lamb, tender-root vegetables and traditional potato crust ($24); Irish burger with whiskey onions, Irish cheddar, pickled cabbage slaw and haystack potatoes. Guinness on tap in Boiler Room ($6); Irish Mule ($10); Irish gold ($10); Irish Tea Party ($10). The Boiler Room will feature The John Byrne Band Saturday, March 16.
Harbor Pines Golf Club, 500 St. Andrews Dr., Egg Harbor Township, 609-927-0006 x23, contact Sharon Ireland. Pub Crawl 5 to 11 p.m. Saturday, March 16. Jitney to bars, buffet at Harbor Pines, drink specials at all stops. Stops include Clancy's Pub, Charlie's Bar and Juliano's bar. T-shirts for crawlers, prizes and karaoke at Harbor Pines. On Sunday, March 17, The Shamrock Scramble begins with 10 a.m. Irish breakfast. Shotgun start (two-player scramble format) at 11 a.m. Irish buffet lunch begins 3:30 p.m. featuring winter greens salad, corned beef and cabbage, shepherd's pie, warm fruit crisp. Drink specials and prizes. $45 Harbor Pines members. $50 associate members. $60 nonmembers. $20 for Irish buffet only beginning at 4 p.m. Contact Golf shop at 609-927-0006, ext. 10.
The Crab Trap, 2 Broadway, Somers Point, 609-927-7377. Regular menu plus Irish specials: corned beef & cabbage ($16); grilled rack of lamb ($24); Irish stew ($14). The Nae Breeks Pipe & Drum Band will play Irish music at 5:30, 7:30 and 9:30 p.m. Sunday, March 17.
Atkinson's Tavern, 1010 Route 9 South, Cape May Court House, 609-465-5641. St. Patrick's specials will run Friday through Sunday, March 15, 16 and 17, for lunch and dinner. Lunch served 11 a.m. to 4:40 p.m; dinner 4:30 to 10:30 p.m. on Friday and Saturday; 4:30 to 9 p.m. on Sunday. Food specials: shepherd's pie served with a salad ($10.95); stuffed cabbage with Irish spaghetti and salad ($11.95); ham and cabbage with potatoes ($9.95); assorted Irish stuffed eggs ($5). Sunday features half-price wings. Green beer pints ($2); Guinness pints ($3); Shamrock martinis ($7); Lucky Leprechaun cocktail ($4); Sunday only Yuengling pints ($2). Saturday: Name That Tune, 9 p.m.. $25 first-place prize.
Mickey & Minnie's, 733 W. White Horse Pike, Cologne, 609-965-1877. Menu available through Sunday, March 17 from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Irish potato cakes ($6); beer-batter-dipped fish & chips ($10); bangers and mash ($14.50); shepherd's pie ($14.50); ham and cabbage ($14.50); grilled Reuben on rye ($9); corned beef special ($9); Irish whiskey chicken tenders ($10). Homemade Irish desserts ($4.95): Irish cream cheesecake, Irish whiskey cake, peppermint chocolate chip ice cream pie. Guinness on tap.
Roman Grill Restaurant, 199 New Road, Linwood, 609-926-3030. Menu served 4 p.m. to close Saturday, March 16, only. Appetizers: Guinness-steamed little neck clams and sausage ($10); boxty potato and crab cake with chipotle remoulade ($10). Entrees: classic corned beef and beer-braised cabbage dinner ($18); bangers and hash, mixed grilled sausages with O'Larry's potato hash ($19); O'Sullivan's ribeye, whiskey onion demi, Champ-style potatoes ($22); Limerick ham-grilled 14-ounce pork chop, mustard demi, braised red cabbage and apple ($20); Lawry's lobster: lobster-stuffed lobster with brandy lobster Bearnaise, Champ potatoes ($28).
Gregory's Restaurant, 900 Shore Road, Somers Point, 609-927-6665. Special menu available Friday through Sunday, March 15 to 17. St. Patrick's lunch from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Corned beef and cabbage with potato and soup ($8.99); Irish beef stew with dark bread ($8.99); grilled Reuben and potato soup ($9.29); fish and chips with small salad ($9.29). Irish dinners served from 4 p.m. Homemade potato leek soup (cup $2.99/ bowl $3.99). Corned beef and cabbage ($11.99) dinner includes a free refill on Sunday only; Irish beef stew ($10.99); shepherd's pie ($10.99); grilled Reuben ($10); fish and chips ($10). House-made desserts ($4.99 each): custard-style Jameson bread pudding, chocolate whiskey cake and Bailey's Irish cream cheesecake. Half & half beer float/Murphy's Irish stout floated on any pint draft ($5.50). Irish coffee ($6.75); Bailey's coffee ($7.50); pints ($5.50): Murphy's stout, Sam Adams, Black & Tan. Guinness Pub can ($5.25); Harp lager ($4.50).
Sandi Pointe Coastal Bistro, 908 Shore Road, Somers Point, 609-927-2759. St. Patrick's Day specials served 3 to 11 p.m. Saturday, March 16, 1 to 9 p.m. Sunday, March 17. Bar open until 2 a.m. Lew London and Bob Mower appearing Saturday 7:30 p.m. Traditional corned beef and cabbage, slow-braised corned beef, carrots, baby onions and new potatoes ($18); Highland shepherd's pie, seasoned beef casserole with garden vegetables, topped with creamy, buttery mashed potatoes and aged cheddar ($16); oven-coddled imported salmon "Limerick" with cabbage mashed, bacon-braised limas, watercress and warm tomato compote ($24). $4 drink specials: Guinness cans, Bailey's, Irish coffee. Regular Sunday specials also available: three-course prime rib dinner ($17.95); two-for-one appetizers.
Harry's Oyster Bar & Seafood, Bally's Atlantic City, Atlantic City, 609-431-0092. St. Patrick's Day parade party and St. Baldrick's event on the Boardwalk. Get your head shaved and support childhood cancer research from 2 to 5 p.m. Danny Eyer Band on the Boardwalk 1 to 5 p.m. Drink specials: Bud Light drafts ($3); Blue Point drafts ($4); Smithwick's ($5); Guinness ($5); Half & half ($5). Available at all three bars, inside and out. St. Patrick's Day specials served all weekend noon to 10:30 p.m. Friday through Sunday, March 15 to 17. Corned beef sliders ($6); Guinness-battered fish & chips bites ($8); classic corned beef and cabbage dinner ($20); Galway salmon ($22); lobster shepherd's pie ($27).
Dock's Oyster House, 2405 Atlantic Ave., Atlantic City, 609-345-0092. St. Patrick's Day specials served all weekend from 5 p.m. to closing. Corned beef & cabbage ($22); lobster shepherd's pie ($27); filet of beef Guinness ($32); Galway salmon ($25). Guinness on tap ($6).
Knife & Fork Inn, 3600 Atlantic Ave., Atlantic City, 609-344-1133. Saturday, March 16, St. Patrick's Day parade party, 2 p.m. Corned beef sliders ($6); Kobe sliders with Guinness cheddar ($8). Guinness on tap ($6); Smithwick's ($5.50).
Atlantic Club Casino Hotel, Boston & The Boardwalk, Atlantic City, 609-347-7111. The Cornucopia Buffet noon to 9 p.m. Saturday, March 16, noon to 8 p.m. Sunday, March 17. Buffet choices will include corned beef roast with cabbage and boiled potatoes. $9.99 cash or credit (regularly ($18.50). The Coffee Shop: On Saturday and Sunday, March 16 and 17, enjoy corned beef and cabbage. Corned beef and pastrami is always on the menu. Special: Irish potato soup with kale and bacon, shepherd's pie, dark chocolate and Guinness stout mousse ($15.95).
Worship Surf Bar, Showboat, 801 Boardwalk, Atlantic City, 609-343-4088. St. Patrick's Day parade 10 a.m. Saturday, March 16. Kegs & Eggs before the parade. Egg and cheese with choice of bacon, sausage or ham on an English muffin ($6). Drink specials: Guinness ($5), Jameson shots ($6), Irish car bombs ($9).
Charlie's Bar & Restaurant, 800 Shore Road, Somers Point, 609-927-3663. Specials served 11 a.m. to midnight Sunday, March 17. Irish stew ($4.99); glazed ham with steamed cabbage and red bliss potatoes; freshly cooked corned beef ($13.99); Four-leaf clover platter (combo of ham and corned beef) with Irish soda bread ($13.99); Charlie's Irish banger ($12.99); Irish banger hoagie ($8.99); Irish beef nachos ($9.99); Irish bread pudding ($5.99); fresh homemade Irish potatoes ($2.50). Guinness, Black & Tan, Black & blues ($4); domestic pints ($2). Nae Breeks bagpipers around 6, 8 and 10 p.m.
Dogtooth Bar & Grill, 100 East Taylor Ave., Wildwood, 609-522-8383. Specials offered 11 a.m. to 1 a.m. Friday through Sunday, March 15 to 17. Dinner specials: Shamrock salad with mixed greens ($12); Irish burger topped with Irish cheddar, corned beef and sauerkraut ($10); "Green" pizza with green veggies, green pesto and mozzarella cheese ($9); corned beef plate with potatoes and rye bread ($12); Guinness beer-battered haddock and chips ($15). Drink specials: Black & Blue, a Blue Moon topped with Guinness ($5); Dogtooth Black & Tan ($5); Three Nutty Irishmen: Jameson, Hazelnut and Bailey's on the rocks ($7.50). Live music by Acoustic Mayhem begins at 9 p.m.
The Mad Batter Restaurant & Bar, 19 Jackson Street, Cape May, 609-884-5970. Sunday, March 17: corned beef and cabbage ($12); Guinness stew ($12); pint of Guinness ($4); Irish potato martini ($6). Open mic, 7 to 10 p.m.
Clancy's by the Bay, 101 East Maryland Ave., Somers Point, 609-927-6969. All day Sunday, March 17. Irish fries ($7.99); corned beef and cabbage ($11.99); wings ($7.99); ham and cabbage ($10.99); shepherd's pie ($12.99); Irish stew ($11). DJ Nick Teti, 2 p.m.; String band, 4:30 to 7:30 p.m.
Rio Station, 3505 Route 9 South, Rio Grande, 609-889-2000. Specials served Friday to Sunday, March 15 to 17. Dining room: 4 to 9 p.m.; bar 4 to 11 p.m. Irish stew ($3.50/ $4.99); Boxty Irish potato pancakes ($4.99); Irish soda bread ($2.99). Entrees: Guinness Irish Beef Stew ($10.99); corned beef & cabbage ($16.99); baked ham and cabbage ($17.99); Irish combo platter, ham and corned beef, served with rosemary roasted red potatoes and fresh green beans ($17.99). Desserts: chocolate stout brownie sundae with mint chocolate chip ice cream ($4.99); Irish potatoes ($3.99).
Ri Ra Irish Pub, The Quarter at The Tropicana, Brighton and The Boardwalk, Atlantic City, 609-348-8600. Lunch: Irish potato cakes ($6.95); fish and chips ($13.95); Irish stew ($14.95); cottage pie ($13.95); beef and Guinness stew ($13.95). All-day Irish breakfast ($12.95). Dinner: Kilbeggan salmon ($18.95); Ballycotton fish pie ($15.95); Jameson roast chicken ($15.95); Guinness-braised short ribs ($18.95); chicken pot pie ($13.95). The Plunge at 10 a.m. followed by a day full of entertainment. Friday, March 15: Steamroller Picnic 11 p.m. Saturday, March 16: Side Arm 11 p.m. Sunday, March 17: Reilly Brothers, noon; DJ Sparkles between sets, The Galway Guild on Stage 9 p.m.
Wolfgang Puck American Grille, Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa, One Borgata Way, Atlantic City, 609-317-1000. Saturday, March 16, from 4 to 11 p.m.: Bangers and mash with Wolfgang Puck's smoked kielbasa ($19).
Gypsy Bar, Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa, 1 Borgata Way, Atlantic City, 609-317-1000. Saturday, March 16, 6 p.m. to 3 a.m.: "Gypsy Bar Lucky 7's" drink specials. 16-ounce Bud Light ($7); car bombs ($7); Jameson ($7). Live music by Gypsy Wisdom.
Mel-Niks Cuisine at Caroline's by the Bay, Bay Avenue and Longport Blvd., Somers Point, 609-927-9007. St. Patrick's Day feast served 11 a.m. to 1 a.m. Friday, Saturday and Sunday, March 15, 16 and 17. Beef and barley broth ($5); scallop chowder ($5); Irish rarebit ($6); bacon and potato cakes ($6); broiled salmon with dill cream sauce ($17.95); corned beef and cabbage ($12.95); Dublin coddle ($14.95); shepherd's pie ($13.95).
Tucker's Pub, 3301 Atlantic Ave., Wildwood, 609-846-1110. Special menu 11 a.m. to closing Friday to Sunday, March 15, 16 and 17. Bangers and mash ($15.99); shepherd's pie ($15.99); corned beef and cabbage ($12.99); ham and cabbage ($12.99); fish and chips ($16.99); Irish soda bread. Guinness, Harp and Smithwick's draught ($4) all weekend. Friday: Irish music 4 to 7 p.m.; Sean Smith 9 p.m. to midnight. Saturday: Celtic revel 9 p.m. to midnight. Sunday: Irish Pipe Brigade at 3 p.m. Free giveaways.
Fitzpatrick's Crest Tavern, 9600 Pacific Ave., Wildwood Crest, 609-522-1200. St. Patrick's Day menu includes corn beef and cabbage, shepherd's pie, ham and cabbage, and bangers and mash. Served all day and night starting at $8.95. Chance at receiving beads as a complimentary favor.
Maynard's Cafe, 9306 Amherst Ave., Margate, 609-822-8423. March with the Maynard's float at the Atlantic City St. Patrick's Day parade at 1 p.m. $20 provides transportation to and from parade and an Irish buffet afterward. Corned beef, cabbage and potato platters all weekend ($3). Drink specials: Bud Light drafts ($1.50); Bud Light pitchers ($6); Magner's Irish cider bottles ($4); Tullamore Dew shots and drinks ($4); Guinness drafts ($5). Saturday: live music by Clancy's Pistol 5 p.m.; Reily Brothers 10 p.m. Sunday: St. Patrick's Day bash with live music by Shamus at 4 p.m., Reily Brothers 8:30 p.m.
Dubliner Pub & Grill, 325 E. Jimmie Leeds Road, Galloway, 609-652-2210. Friday 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.; Saturday 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.; Sunday 7 a.m. to closing. Special menu includes corned beef and cabbage ($10), fish & chips ($13), shepherd's pie ($11), chicken pot pie ($11). Guinness, Smitwick's and Harp draughts ($5). Friday: Tom Brett 6 to 10 p.m.; Saturday: Jimmy Mulligan Duo 7 to 11 p.m.; Sunday: Baloney Brothers 1 o 5 p.m., DJ Kenny Sloane 6 to 10 p.m. Giveaway from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. with SOJO 104.9-FM, win a trip to Las Vegas to see Cee Lo Green.
Irish Pub, 164 St. James Place at the Boardwalk, Atlantic City, 609-344-9063. Open 24 hours. Special potato soup ($4) available Friday to Sunday, March 16, 17 and 18, along with traditional Irish food that is always on the menu: corned beef sandwich ($6); corned beef special ($6); St. James potatoes ($4.50); Boston battered cod and chips ($8.50). Monday, March 18, is Bag Day, a celebration for all those working on St. Patrick's Day. Killian Red pints ($3).
Cafe Roma at Caesars, 2100 Pacific Ave., Atlantic City, 609-348-4411. Saturday and Sunday, March 16 and 17, the restaurant will feature corned beef and cabbage and Irish bread pudding ($24.99) to celebrate St. Patrick's Day.
Toga Bar at Caesars, 2100 Pacific Ave., Atlantic City, 609-348-4411. Enjoy Guinness ($5) and Jameson special ($6) Saturday and Sunday, March 16 and 17.
12 Bar/Spirit/Freeze/Backstage at Showboat, Showboat Atlantic City, 801 Boardwalk, Atlantic City, 609-343-4000. Enjoy Guinness ($5) and Jameson's shots ($6) to celebrate St. Patrick's Day Saturday and Sunday, March 16 and 17.
Shore Diner, 6710 Tilton Road, Egg Harbor Township, 609-641-3669. On, Sunday, March 17, from 11 a.m. to closing, enjoy corned beef and cabbage or Irish lamb stew ($14.95); Guinness-marinated ribeye ($18.95). Includes soup or salad, bread, coffee or tea, pint of Killian's Red beer and Irish potatoes. Shore Diner $50 gift certificates giveaway at 6 p.m.