Install

Get the latest updates as we post them — right on your browser

. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

The Guinness Resistance

MTBelfast keeps a low profile, but it drew a crowd on St. Patrick's Day.
Molly Gwynn's it ain't. The new Belfast pub is about as far from a cutesy kit pub as you can get. That's not to say it's not a theme pub, though -- it's just that the theme would seem to be the IRA.

A large mural featuring an Irish flag emblazoned with "Tiocfaidh ar la" ("Our day will come") greets you on one wall. Another wall mural depicts British soldiers carrying the Union Jack marching off to the horizon where a sign points to England. Above it is painted "Slan Abhaile" ("Safe Home") and below, "37 years -- time to go ..." Various other pictures of handguns and items of resistance are hung around the walls. Flyers depicting civil disobedience and imploring guests to "Resist British Rule" are scattered about.

As you might expect, this is quite a rough-and-tumble kind of pub -- not really the place to hold your book-club meeting. There were plenty of bovver boots and the odd open face wound to be found among the patrons here on St. Patrick's Day, but the mood remained jolly. Still, an Englishman might find himself feeling a little uncomfortable here, to say the least.

As for the menu, it's brief but democratic. The 1 1/2 dozen dishes include "SAS" chicken wings (180 rubles), "Patrick's Breath" toasted garlic rye bread (70 rubles), "Leprechaun's Pot" Irish stew (200 rubles) and three varieties of sausages (150-200 rubles) plus "FREEdom" potatoes (60 rubles).

The Irish beers on tap are Guinness and Kilkenny (both 180 rubles a pint). The bar seems to have accepted the latest truce, at least when it comes to beer, as two British beers are served as well, Newcastle Brown Ale (180 rubles a pint) and Boddington's Ale (170 rubles a pint). They also serve the strange (but tasty) dark Czech interloper, Kelt stout (140 rubles a half-liter). The light Euro beers available are Edelweiss and Lapin Kulta (both 140 rubles a half-liter) and the cheapest beer is Heineken (90 rubles a half-liter).

1 Sredny Ovchinnikovsky Per., Bldg. 13, 953-0556, 6 p.m.-12:30 p.m., Sat. & Sun. 5 p.m.-12:30 p.m., M. Novokuznetskaya, www.belfast-pub.ru