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Sunday, April 05, 2015

#2362 - Irish Times Pub, Victoria, BC - 12/1/2013

Irish Times, Victoria, BC
Since I told you about the murder of the owner of  the Garrick's Head Saloon across the street, I might as well pass along the story of architect of the grand old Bank of Montreal Building, which now houses Victoria's Irish Times Pub. From the City of Victoria's Self-Guided Walking Map:
'One of British Columbia’s most famous architects, Francis Mawson Rattenbury, designed the Bank of Montreal building (now the Irish Times Pub) and Victoria’s Parliament Buildings. Rattenbury divorced his first wife Florence in the 1920s after commencing a scandalous affair with a much younger woman. Shunned by their friends, the new couple married and moved to England where she soon fell in love with their 19-year-old chauffeur. One night not long after, her new lover took a carpenter’s mallet and clubbed Rattenbury to death! Though charges against her were dropped, she committed suicide a few days later by stabbing herself and falling in a river."'
Undissuaded by the bloody history of our neighbors to the north, Matt MacNeil (Bard and Banker, Penny Farthing) has installed here an opulent palace of gleaming brass, etched glass and dark wood which was recently named one of the top 12 Irish bars outside of Ireland by the paper that inspired its name.

I have never been to Ireland, but when I imagine the sort of Irish pub I would most enjoy, it is a cozy, timeworn, little place far removed from the grandiosity of this kind of place, with its two country clubby floors hosting 190 seats (80 more on the patios in summer). Nevertheless, they have some very nice beer choices, sufficient food options, and it appears to become a fun place when thanks to the crowds and live music seven days a week. The Irish Times article cites the "craic" of the place, i.e. the air of mischievous merriment. I'd still prefer a small neighborhood joint myself, but any bar with craic makes the world a better place.



1200 Government St, Victoria, BC V8W 1Y3 - (250) 383-7775
Est. 2004 - Building constructed: 1896
Web site: irishtimespub.ca - facebook
Reviews: timescolonist - cbc.ca - douglasmagazine - yelp - urbanspoon - beeradvocate 

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