February 2007

Murphy's Irish Pub - Good Food, Good Friends, Good Times

Author: Jimmy Leppert

There is no better way to keep a healthy heart than by surrounding yourself with loyal friends in a cozy atmosphere. Be it for enjoying after-work drinks, eating dinner, or watching a sport’s match, Murphy’s Irish Pub, located in Heritage Plaza, offers a memorable experience of revelry, feasting, and Irish lassies.

Owner Paul “Irish” Murphy’s genuine adherence to customer recognition and Irish hospitality ensures that you are known by both name and beverage of choice. Irish has surrounded himself with a staff of knowledgeable and hospitable workers, loyal to both their customers and the traditions of true Irish pubs. This explains the steady stream of regulars to the establishment and one of the more diverse customer bases on the island.

On any given day, you can walk into Murphy’s and find it filled with jovial Americans, Europeans, Australians, New Zealanders… and even a Brit or two, which speaks to the authenticity of Murphy’s. True to the Irish tradition, the pub presents a myriad of televised sports matches, including rugby, football (soccer), and cricket. On the day of a big match, you are sure to find an animated mix of fans, full of song and fervor.

This experience is further complemented by the food. Importing many of the ingredients from Ireland, Murphy’s offers a wealth of traditional Irish fare. The menu boasts conversation-starting appetizers, fresh sandwiches, delicious British pasties, filling Irish entrées, and blissful desserts. The favorites of the regulars are the homemade fish and chips and shepherd’s pie. Both plates leave the patron filled with comfort and a smile. And with a non-smoking policy, the dining experience remains clean and comfortable.

This focus on customer service has a waterfall effect, thanks to Irish’s committed role to the community, including sponsorships of several sports teams and regular donations to local and national charity events. Irish’s involvement in the soccer and softball communities is only exceeded by his amaranthine devotion to Hilton Head’s rugby team. (They finished first in their division this fall.) Irish is the team sponsor and a deeply respected veteran player. Be sure to stop by the weekly 1 p.m. Saturday matches at Barker Field, and follow the caravan to Murphy’s Irish Pub for a truly otherworldly experience. After the game, both the home and visiting teams head to Murphy’s Irish Pub for dinner, drinks, and rituals—an experience every local should have. All are welcome and encouraged to take part.

This patriotic adherence to Irish tradition made its way to America when Irish first moved across the pond in 1993 from County Wexford, Ireland, to play for the local rugby team. Since then, he and his wife, Lisa (who owns the Sanctuary spa) have raised their children Liam and Erin, worked in the hospitality business, and opened the namesake pub in 2005. Lucky for us, Irish brought much of Ireland with him—keepsakes and mementos that adorn the restaurant walls. You will find yourself surrounded by pictures, postcards, and other oddities (including Irish’s driver’s license from Ireland), while enjoying both contemporary and traditional Irish music.

The truest test of a restaurant is the consistent overall experience by the patron. Much like the dichotomy between the words house and home, Murphy’s is not simply a restaurant, but a pub—an unpretentious place of welcoming, celebration, and Irish fun. With the rugby season in swing, St. Patty’s Day around the corner (The pub has a countdown ticker.) and a fundraising golf tournament for the rugby team on February 17, you have every reason to stop by. You will find old friends there, and you’re sure to find new ones. According to customers, “It’s like family.”

See you at Murphy’s!

Murphy’s Irish Pub
81 Pope Avenue
Heritage Plaza

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