Lost in the shadows of Moore Square is the popular Tir Na Nog, Irish pub! I say lost because it always seems like a secondary spot to me. A place where I don't usually have a huge desire to visit but usually somebody else I know suggests it. Tir Na Nog straddles the line between bar and restaurant sort of like the Raleigh Times but they also have a music schedule for Irish folk, cover bands and more. Add in the Nog Run Club and there always seems to be people floating in and out of the Nog. But for me, it always seems to get lost in the cobwebbed corners of my food brain.
When I usually come here it's more of a bar visit but Tir Na Nog has a pretty extensive menu of Irish bar classics like fish n chips, boxty and more. It's a big space to stretch out into with a large bar, front and center, two side spaces, a performance stage and a more cozy, cottage-private room in back. One main difference for Tir Na Nog versus other Irish bars is that open space. Typically I think dark polished woods with nooks and crannies, here you can see and be seen. I've tried their wings, chicken tenders, sandwiches and more, all are pretty middle-of-the-road which is not a surprise.
The Tir Na Nog brunch on Sunday is pretty decent, I believe it's about $13 and they set up tables/stations around the right-hand side with items ranging from breakfast basics (scrambled eggs, sausage, bacon, benedicts) along with some lunch items (fritatta, taco stand, beans-bangers,) and a to-order waffle station. The brunch here is usually pretty popular, just make sure you don't visit before noon if you want a bloody mary with your meal.
All-in-all, Tir Na Nog is a serviceable option for drinks and food if you're in the Moore Square area. They're a great community citizen but I wish they could step up their game a bit. Compared to the old Hibernian and Napper Tandy's, they don't have a unique space and service always seems to be lagging a bit at Tir Na Nog. And with the food coming right down the middle, it just becomes a place that I go to versus a place that I choose to go to, if that makes sense. It's a decent place to grab a pint, shoot some darts and hang out but it could be so much more with this convenient location...
218 S Blount Street
Raleigh, NC 27601