Irish Embassy

Irish Embassy Pub (website, Twitter)

49 Yonge Street, Toronto ON M5E 1J1 (on the north-east corner of Wellington Street East and Yonge Street) 416-866-8282
Google Maps 

This could well be the noisiest pub in Toronto.

Over the years I have been to the Irish Embassy Pub a number of times and on every visit, save the last, which was on a Sunday evening, I was overwhelmed by the noise and the only reason I went back this time was because I haven’t reviewed it for this blog. This pub could well be the noisiest in Toronto.

The Irish Embassy Pub clearly shows its former life as a nineteenth-century bank as the echoes of its past still resonate in the thick Greek columns, classical arches, and tall ceilings, which are likely to blame for making the place so noisy. (The glass-topped bank tellers partitions are probably not original.) As a result, the establishment doesn’t have much of a pub feel about it and no coziness, perhaps reflecting the business crowd it attracts. The Dublin Lounge — which can be reserved for large groups — was closed during our most recent visit and I have never had the chance to venture in there. The pub itself is often very crowded during the week and I recall walking by a long line up outside the pub on a recent St. Patrick’s Day that fell on a weekday. All said, it would appear that my dearth of warm fuzzies for the Irish Embassy Pub is in the minority.

Number of visits by yours truly: fourth or fifth visit, most recently on a Sunday evening in February 2011
TTC information: two intersections south of King
Booze selection: 20 or so beers, including Strongbow cider (yes, they have Pimm’s)
Food selection: fancy Irish. I had the vegetarian tikka masala, which is not on the online menu, leading me to think that the online ones are out of date
Service staff: good, but others have commented on the slowness. I guess it depends on the day, time, etc.
Prices: very expensive, but you are downtown
Toilets: nice and downstairs
Patio: nope
Wheelchair accessible: no, steps at front and the toilet is downstairs
Televisions: eight and it’s not a large pub
Live music: nope
Piped-in music: Mr. Bowie, U2

Rating: four pints (out of five) 


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