When I interned in Paris, there were a couple of categories for nights out, if you were just a poor, bashful college student like me (read – not hip to club scenes in general). The American bars we tried were swamped with kids who were doing a semester abroad just to party. Authentic French joints were distant – each party in their own bubble, minding their own business.
Then we found Molly Malone’s. Emerging from the Metro at the Madeleine, you turn left for a few blocks, and Molly Malone’s was on a side street on the left. We first went there for St Patrick’s Day, with an Irish priest who was a friend of a friend of Natasha’s, I think. I even got to try out some choice Irish Gaelic phrases like “A story requires a drink.”, “One beetle recognizes another.”, and “Everyone is sociable until a cow invades their garden.”. Well, and of course “Blessings of the Feast of St. Patrick to you.”
It was awesome. Rich, hearty Guinness. Rich, hearty hugs all around. Breaking into Irish song. The crowd and the fun spilling into the street where parked cars served as bar tables.
This pic is from one of our visits, but I’m not sure which. Eric, Natasha, and I were all of the students in our program. Luckily, they are pretty cool people and we had a great time. (Natasha isn’t pictured here but may come up in another #TBTStories post.) We went back several times on quieter nights and the barkeep always remembered us. It was our own little bit of home, even though none of us had yet even visited the Emerald Isle and at least two of the three of us had distinctly non-Irish roots.
When my husband and I finally traveled to Paris together a few years ago, I was ready to share Molly Malone’s with him. Alas, the proprietor had passed away and the place had fallen into disrepair and eventually shut its doors. Or at least, I think that’s what Eric told me. Looks like someone else reopened it in 2002 (?), plus there are Yelp reviews from 2012/2013, but perhaps it’s not the same. Still ranks as one of my favorite spots worldwide for a pint, though.
Oh, PS – I changed how the site shows up so the home is now all blog posts across categories. I’m hoping it makes it a bit easier to explore. Let me know what you think!