An Irish blessing over the entrance of Paddy McGee’s reads: “May the friendships you make here, be those which endure.” Under the green-and-white stained-glass dome of the Irish pub, comrades might meet over a pint of frothy beer or a sporting event beaming out from flat-screen TVs. The menu offers more substantive sustenance, including selections such as towering burgers, fish 'n’ chips, and philly cheese steaks that complement a broad range of liquors and brews. At night, diners pay no cover to enjoy the music of live bands, which resounds in the bar, spilling out onto the breezy patio and the street beyond, free to find a new job as elevator music or the mechanical lullaby in a baby mobile.
Though SoLita Delray's lounge-like atmosphere hosts live music and DJs on the weekend, nightlife isn't even its main draw. In addition to a bustling lounge and courtyard, SoLita—or "south of Little Italy"— houses a hopping kitchen where chefs cook Italian meals using generations-old family recipes. Local and imported ingredients give zings of flavor to all dishes. Fresh pastas come draped in sauces from light, spicy tomato broth to rich mascarpone cream. For heartier fare, chefs grill rib-eye steaks, veal chops, and filet mignon or roast whole fish with lemon, olive oil, and jokes about diminutive fin size.
At Kavasutra, guests chat with friends over cups of kava, a traditional root extract from the South Pacific celebrated for its soothing, sedative effects. Rather than impairing mental function like alcohol, kava merely relaxes the mind, allowing patrons to leave the worries of everyday life behind for a spell. Surrounded by cozy couches and Polynesian-inspired decor, visitors can lounge in an oasis of calm as they make new friends.
Alongside the flags of various sports teams, an abundance of flat-screen TVs parades throughout Grand Tavern of Delray Beach, beaming big games down below into a spacious, well-lit dining and bar area. There, visitors dig into gourmet, made-from-scratch bar food such as barbecue ribs and succulent 10-ounce rib eyes. Throughout the week, special events help further juice the restaurant's atmosphere, including classic car shows on Tuesdays, trivia on Wednesdays, and live music on Saturdays.
At Dubliner Irish Pub, only one authentic pub fixture is missing: a roisterous old man in a wool cap and cable-knit sweater. All the others, however, have acclimated to the Florida heat. Communal tables conducive to storytelling. Foamy pints of Guinness, Smithwick's, and Magners cider. A stick-to-your-ribs menu peppered with corned beef sliders, shepherd's pie, and beer-battered haddock. Even the flat-screen TVs find time between American sports for Celtic pastimes such as soccer, rugby, hurling, and competitive freckling. Weekly bouts of trivia and live performances from local bands help keep the craic crackly.
For rookie puffers, the hookah is a glass water pipe originally from India that is popular for smoking syrup-soaked tobacco. Filtering the smoke through cool water results in a smooth, mellow experience that is on par with the Sultan Hookah Lounge's relaxed atmosphere. While sipping the house Turkish coffee with friends, enjoy more than 100 different flavors of tobacco, including double apple, orange crush, mango, strawberry daiquiri, vanilla, honeydew melon, lemon, mint, rose, apricot, and cappuccino. Tobaccos can be mixed to create custom candy-flavored goodness, such as orange crush daiquiri, vanilla cappuccino, or immortality-bestowing ambrosial nectar. Sultan's also offers outdoor seating for mixing the flavors of hookah with the scent of the open air.