Fitzpatrick's is a retro and vintage collector's dream, wrapped up in a bar/ restaurant that serves hearty, traditional and not so traditional meals. The restaurant and grounds are bursting at the seams with cast iron signs, machines, old cameras, farming memorabilia and much, much more. This place must be a labour of love, as there are literally thousands of items hanging from the walls and ceiling, and all of them are original antiques. If you go, be prepared to spend a lot of time simply staring at the collections and curios that surround you.
Just a fraction of the mementos and memorabilia of 'Old Ireland' that Fitzpatrick's has to offer.
There are both lunchtime and evening menus and seasonal specials at set times of the year. The staff pull all of the stops at Hallowe'en and Christmas by turning the whole place into a spooky mansion or Christmas grotto. Even more ornament sand curios are laid on for visitors to see at this time. We saw many different groups of people eating and drinking, and it was clear that the staff at Fitzpatrick's welcome families and children, as well as very large groups. The Guinness
there was incredible, and amongst the best that I have tasted in the Emerald Isle. You can even get married here, and many have done!
A happy couple enjoying their day outside the main entrance
When there is kinder weather, it is well worth a walk outside to see the aviary and animal area. There is an incredible array of wildlife looked after here: everything from meercats and baby goats to a very inquisitive kookaburra! The large enclosures are surrounded by yet more items, including old coracles and fishing boats, vintage cigarette machines and farm machinery.
One of the residents in the wildlife area
There are several eating areas and dining rooms and they are all festooned with memorabilia. It would take a lifetime to examine and notice every object, but my favourites were the antique cameras hanging from the wall, and the old Guinness
signs that were in almost every room.
Toys, tankards and trinkets (and a French Horn)
This is a very worthwhile place to visit, and I have certainly never been to a place as quirky and unusual. It is very accessible from the roads surrounding Dundalk and excellently signposted.