- 901 E. Fortification St., Jackson, MS, 39201
- Overall User Rating:
- (3 ratings)
- Mon.-Sat. 11 a.m.-2 a.m.
- Official Web Site:
When you're the only game in town, it's easy to rest on your laurels.
Thankfully, that's not so with Fenian's Pub. As Jackson's only Irish pub, they could probably get away with just throwing up a few Guiness signs, doling out shots of Bushmill's and serving some corned beef and cabbage once a week.
But no, they go the extra mile, constantly striving to provide patrons with one of the most authentic Irish experiences you can find in the south. Not only that, but they give back to the community as well, tirelessly promoting and supporting Irish culture and music in the capital city.
It's no wonder then that some of the native Irish musicians that have performed at Fenian's always make it a point to stop there. I can't think of a more ringing endorsement than that.
The drinks: Fenian's brags that they serve up the "perfect pint" of Guiness, and there's no argument here. Unless you've been to bonny ol' Ireland herself you probably haven't tasted the classic stout nectar like they serve it up right from the tap.
They also serve other UK favorites like Harp (which you can get mixed with Guiness for a killer black and tan), Bass and Killian's Irish Red, along with all the domestic standbys and other import selections.
They also have a full bar that serves up many of their signature "stout libations," but the truly adventurous will want to check out their selection of fine Irish whiskys.
The decor: Fenian's interior is classy, cozy and inviting, just like a great neighborhood Irish pub should be, with warm wood interiors, a sturdy bar to belly up to and nifty decor additions like the working train that chugs overhead in the front bar area and the open fireplace in the dining/stage area.
And I say cozy, because with its low ceilings, tiny bathrooms and sometimes cramped quarters, you'll definitely be rubbing elbows with your fellow bargoers as it can get quite crowded, especially on weekends. Luckily, there's a quaint outdoor deck where the claustrophobic can escape.
The crowd: Being situated on the corner of Fortification and Jefferson Streets in the heart of the Belhaven neighborhood makes Fenian's perhaps Jackson's purest neighborhood bar, with many of its regulars who live just a stone's throw away walking to the pub to grab a pint.
That's why you'll always see a friendly face there among its clientele of Belhavenites, college students, music lovers and fans of all things Irish. Its neighborhood convenience is what gives Fenian's the authentic feel of a true Irish pub, where friendships and loyalties are forged and everyone is treated like family.
The service: I mentioned that Fenian's treats you like family, that's because their tireless staff is sort of its own little family itself. The bartenders will likely remember your name and drink of choice (even if you're memory's a little fuzzy). And earlier I mentioned that it can get a little cramped when it's busy, right? Well luckily they have servers that will take your drinks orders right at your table to keep crowd maneuvering to a minimum.
The sounds: The live entertainment is one of the best features of Fenian's, with the pub's intimate atmosphere giving music a more interactive feel that most other clubs in town.
There's "never a cover charge" at Fenian's, and they have live music of one form or another every night they're open. Mondays are one of the city's most popular karaoke nights with host Matt Collette, Jackson's resident karaoke guru. Tuesdays are what is perhaps the best-attended open mic night in town, attracting a pretty decent array of talent.
Wednesdays through Saturdays they have live bands, ranging from local standbys like Sherman Lee Dillon, The Juvenators and The Electric Company to local upstarts like St. Adonis and Cool Papa Bell to the occasional touring acoustic musicians.
And, being an Irish pub and all, Fenian's is the premier place to catch live Irish and Celtic music in the state. Thursdays are Irish night, featuring popular locals like Legacy and Spirits of the House, as well as occasional appearance by notable artists like Mairtin de Cogain, Jimmy Crowley and other masters of the form (some of these gigs unfortunately break the "no cover" rule).
And in Fenian's tireless efforts to promote Irish culture, they host traditional ceili dances on Sundays at least once a month.
The food: That dedication to Irish tradition is perhaps most apparent in Fenian's menu, which features a number of dishes you can't get anwhere else in the state. Fancy a Scotch egg? A Boxty? Shepherd's Pie? Irish stew? Don't know what any of these things are? Visit Fenian's for an education.
They also have the usual bar offerings like burgers, sandwiches, wings, appetizers and more, each with a bit of a unique Fenian's spin on them, as well as daily lunch specials (which include the aforementioned corned beef and cabbage).
The damage: For such authenticity and quality, Fenian's only carries a slight price difference from your average bar. Sandwiches and specialties run from $7.49-$10.99.
Beer, shot and cocktail prices are comparable to other bars if generally slightly pricier, while Guiness and other pints set you back around $5.50 while specialties like the black and tan are a few bucks more.
If the rare Scotch whiskys pique your interest though, be prepared to spend a pretty penny.