Lucky US

Authentic Irish pub kicks into South Austin with whiskey, beer, and live music

Irish pub kicks into South Austin with whiskey, beer, and live music

Darcy's Donkey food
Darcy's Donkey's menu will include traditional Irish meat pies and lots of potatoes. Photo by Chris Olfers

If the March closure of Fado left a giant shamrock-shaped hole in your heart, we have good news. A new Irish pub is moving into the former Austin Java space at 1608 Barton Springs Rd. in early October.

According to a release, Darcy’s Donkey is meant as a tribute to the traditional public houses that founder Neville Joyce knew growing up with in rural West Ireland. To help set the scene, designer Lilianne Steckel brought in vintage and new pieces from the country to set the lived-in ambience

Naturally, Darcy’s will feature a familiar bar program focused on whiskey and beer and comfort food bites. The latter will be the work of chef Ryan Durham, who spent most of his culinary career on another famous island: Honolulu.

As one might expect, potatoes will form the foundation of the menu with six different dishes featuring the humble tuber. The restaurant will also serve meat pies, filled with creative ingredients like pastrami and truffled mushrooms.

The heart food is tailored to be enjoyed with the deep selection of Irish, Scottish, and American whiskeys and a beer list focused on the “holy trinity” of ales, stouts, and lagers. Seasonal drafts will rotate weekly on the taps, ensuring guests always have something new to try. A pre-Prohibition cocktail menu will also keep customer in high spirits.

The more respectable among them might want to book the dining room’s Irish snug — a small, private room that historically was used so that upstanding citizens like police officers and priests could take a secret nip.

The rowdier crowd will no doubt be happier in the main dining room or the patio. Both will host live music and the occasional soccer viewing party.