St Patrick’s Day is around the corner and that means one thing – Guinness

But where’s the best independent venues in Liverpool to grab a pint of the black stuff?


Liverpool has a long-standing relationship with Ireland and the city makes the most of it every March when St Paddy’s Day when arrives. The week is a huge date in the calendar for many of our clients who look forward to a spike in footfall and drink sales. The biggest seller of the period is Guinness of course, sales of the Irish stout soar as its become synonymous with the celebration. 

Like many others, our staff are big fans, so we thought it would be fun to have a look around some of our favourite independent venues as they prepare for the celebration and find out what makes a great Guinness.

Written by Liam Jones (Founder)

Pogue Mahone

The first pub on the list for me has got to be Pogue Mahone. Located at the top of Seel St, this venue is the self-proclaimed ‘best Guinness in Liverpool’ and it’s hard to disagree. This place has everything you need – fantastic pints, fantastic atmosphere and great staff.


Dockleaf is based inside the Cains Brewery Village, a site we know well after completing a series of safety works 18 months ago. Being located on such a historic site for the city’s brewing industry is quite a bit of pressure, but the team at Dockleaf have done a fantastic job.

The ‘urban-pub’ which went disused for a long time after the closure of Cains Brewery has been brought back to life and now offers a fantastic space to catch up friends and enjoy a well perfected Guinness. We asked Dan what makes a great pint and he said “Love, care and a proper line clean”.

Punch Tarmeys

Punch Tarmey’s has recently been through a comprehensive renovation. The venue looks fantastic and does the site total justice. Not many people know that directly underneath the pub lies a natural water lake! Punch has made of the most of this by placing a glass ceiling on an existing well so visitors can see straight down into the lake. 

Written by Sean Sturgeon (Marketing)


Shenanigans (located on Tithbarn St a 5 minute walk from Moorfields Station) is an amazing Irish bar, with a friendly atmosphere and staff playing live music every Friday and serving up amazing Guinness pints. My first experience in Shenanigans was with a group of friends who love it in there. The venue did not disappoint as I had a great time, playing darts and admiring the amazing Pink Floyd art.

Whilst visiting Shenanigans for this blog, I asked one of the colleagues (Roy) what makes a good Guinness: “A good Guinness is one that is flown well and it’s always flowing at Shenanigans.” 

Shenanigans is one of my personal favourite Irish bars, it’s also amazing to watch the football with friends and family.


McCooley’s is an Irish sport and live music bar and another personal favourite of mine.  There are two venues, one on Concert Square another on Mathew Street. Both venues provide amazing atmospheres with a wide selection of drinks to choose from such as Irish inspired cocktails, craft beers and of course the beloved Guinness.

I have had countless experiences in both McCooley’s venues over the years. Every time has been brilliant whether it be earlier on in the night or front and center dancing the night away (granted, I am not a very good dancer).

Speaking to a member of staff from McCooley’s on Mathew Street, I asked him his opinion on what makes a good Guinness: “The closer you are to Ireland, the better it is. We’re fortunate in that sense.”

The Bridewell

The Bridewell is one of the city’s hidden gems, situated on 1 Campbell Square (opposite the Italian restaurant Amalia). The pub offers one of the best hospitality experiences I have ever come across. Owners Fiona and Dom truly care about you for choosing to spend both your time and money in their venue and go out of their way to make the experience special, every time.

It’s a traditional pub in every sense of the word and one I love to go to with friends and family.

Guinness is a staple of the venue, being one of their most frequent sellers. Speaking to Ian from The Bridewell, I also asked him what makes a great Guinness and he had a very simple but accurate response to what the bar represents, “Love”. 

Wherever you choose to spend your time this St Patrick’s Day, have fun, be safe and always drink responsibly.

Follow us on social media for more news, blogs and info.

Compliance diaries

If you manage or own a hospitality venue, we guarantee that our compliance diaries will be the easiest way to manage your day-to-day operations, food safety, fire safety and health and safety.

Classroom courses

From first aid to food safety – we deliver a selection of courses suited to different working environments and roles.


If you’re looking to roll out training to a number of staff or carry out refreshers, our ROSPA approved e-learning courses are a great way to do it.

Fire risk assessments

If you manage non-domestic premises, you must have a suitable fire risk assessment completed. Click for more info.

What are food hygiene ratings?

The food hygiene rating scheme is important to customers and venues. It’s the primary way in which Food Safety Legislation is regulated, click to read more.

What are the 14 major food allergens?

Every venue must let their customers know if the food/drink they serve contains one of the 14 major food allergens. So it’s really important the allergens are fully understood, click for more info.

Client Focus - Maray

Named after Le Marais, a vibrant neighbourhood located in the 4th arrondissement of Paris, Maray brings a tasteful piece of Parisian culture to the people of Liverpool.

Client Focus - One Fine Day

Situated right in the centre of the Liverpool business district, One Fine Day offers a relaxing escape from the hustle and bustle of city life.

How to wash your hands properly.

Advice for protecting yourself and others against the COVID-19 (coronavirus) is to wash your hands well and often – but are you doing it correctly? Click to learn more