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Celtic Ireland - the Burg.: Whisky in the Bar.
As of 2007 there are now two 'Irish' pubs in Brugge; Celtic Ireland on the Burg (just follow the ghostly green lighting) and the Druid's Cellar (technically speaking NOT Irish, but Celtic) - a hidden gem on the Kleine Sint-Amandsstraat near to the Grote Markt (under a Chinese restaurant). Along with Charlie Rockets and the Bauhaus the Druid's Cellar and Celtic Ireland are where the local crowds (well, crowds might be an exagguration) gather to chat (80% of them in English) and see if Irish charm can somehow stretch itself over the channel to work it's magic upon a bar where perhaps one of the staff is actually Irish. But it works.
Druid's Cellar: this small bar opened in 2007 and is a refreshing change from the usual 'waffle and coffee' joints near the market place. There's a small street near the 'Quick' hamburger restaurant (btw, 'Quick' has NOTHING to do with the speed of service) called the Kleine Sint-Amandstraat: a small cobbled street (like most of Brugge) with a number of great restaurants (backpackers...for a massive serving of pasta for 3.5 euros go the the 'Medard'), ice-cream parlours and jewelry shops. To your left is the Lange Muur Chinese restaurant and underneath....barely visible (barr the large signs, arrows and blackboards advertising the fact) is the Druid's Cellar.
Coming down the stairs you'll walk into a friendly bar with native-English speaking staff. They have darts, a pool table, show all major football matches on a large plasma screen, and serve a large variety of drinks. They even serve a roast on a sunday (reservation necessary).
Although small the Druid's Cellar seems to be able to fit a lot of people in (especially on a weekend). It's open from 11am and closes when you crawl out (which'll be 11:30am if you're drinking the local jenever). The crowd is varied; locals, tourists, young, old. It's a nice change from the 'plastic' chains of Irish-themed bars that populate Europe. (Saying this, it's not really an 'Irish' bar. But they will play 'whisky in the jar' if you ask nicely).
Smoking is allowed by the bar, but not in the pool room (which also has a few tables), and in good weather there are tables and chairs outside.
There's an English-language quiz on a Sunday night. There is occassional live music at the weekend.
Quiet during the daytime (a nice place to stop between shopping and sightseeing) the bar livens up in the evening. People are friendly and willing to chat. Ask for tourist info behind the bar (they know their way around) and the nearest 10 people will probably add their advice, too, whether you like it or not. It's definitely worth a visit.
Celtic Ireland: The outside terras is tiny but inside you can find a small courtyard for those rare sunny days. The decor is fake sandstone - I think. One of the tables has a seethrough middle that allows you to glimpse a piece of the ancient city walls below. The Celtic Ireland serves the regular Kilkenny's and Guiness along with a mixture of local Jenevers and a very long Whisky list. Food is served midday and evening and has a reputation of quality without being (too!) overpriced.
This is a large bar with seating upstairs for diners. Pool tables in the back room (the 'red room'). Regular live music (mainly Irish).
The bar tends to have the occassional stag-do passing through to lighten up the evening.
The Celtic Ireland has a sister bar in Ostende.
Dress Code: Clothes, preferably.
- Beer Tasting
Very popular bar on the Burg square. Lively both day and night as they serve everything from breakfast to beer. Lots of English-speaking ex-pats and tourists so if that floats your boat, be sure to pop in!
Dress Code: Very casual, it's all about sitting, chatting and boozing anyway :-)
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