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Jeff Meade

Food & Drink

Like Soda Bread? You’ll Love Irish Soda Scones

Penny Thorne is one of the most talented people I know. Her Pawcatuck, Conn., bakery—Black Dahlia Baking Company—is incredibly popular. She could probably coast on the quality of her regular baked goodies, but she is well known for accommodating the needs of her customers who have particular dietary needs.

I asked her for a recipe to help usher in St. Patrick’s Week, and these Irish Soda Scones are what she came up with. They can be made with regular flour, but with a minor adjustment they can be gluten-free instead. With yet another minor adjustment or two, they can be dairy-free, as well.

I have celiac, which means wheat flour is a no-no, so good egg that she is—lame bakery joke—she whipped up some gluten-free Irish Soda Scones and shipped them out to me here in Philadelphia. They were extraordinarily tasty. Slathered with a bit of butter? Pure heaven for this Irish-American boy. If you didn’t know they were gluten-free, you’d swear they were made with regular wheat flour.

Here’s what Penny had to say about them:

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How to Be Irish in Philly

How to Be Irish in Philly This Week

This is the week Philadelphia’s Irish have been waiting for. There’s so much music on the agenda, you’ll never keep up. Although we invite you to try.

On the big day itself, there will be food and drink specials at most, if not all of the pubs and bars where our artists are performing—including our favorite St. Patrick’s Day breakfast, kegs and eggs. Try it, you’ll like it. And be sure to support our many Irish pubs and restaurants as best you can. Many of them have had a hard time of it. 

Here’s what’s happening in this very busy week to come.

Friday, March 12

Raymond Coleman takes the stage at the New Deck Tavern, 3408 Sansom Street in University City, starting at 6:30 p.m.

The Shantys are on tap at Marty Magee’s Beer Garden, 1110 Lincoln Avenue in Prospect Park, Delco. The show starts at 7 p.m.

You can see Frank Daly, Jamison Celtic Rock front man, and fiddler Alice Marie, from 8 to 11 p.m., at Kensington Pub, 2116 E Tioga Street in Philly.

Saturday, March 13

It’s a big day at Renault Winery, 72 North Bremen Avenue in Egg Harbor, N.J., starting at 11:30 a.m. Among the day’s events: Jimi Milligan Band, Fiddle Mix by Shelly B and South Philly String Band’s Irish Brigade. Outside, Irish bands, food, vendors and a lot more.

There are two pop-up performances by the McDade-Cara School of Irish Dance outdoors at Cardinal John Foley Regional Catholic School, 300 East Eagle Road in Havertown, at 2 and 3 p.m.

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Photo Essays

Photo Feature: The Philly Parade Through the Years

We’ve been covering the Philadelphia St. Patrick’s Day parade since 2006 … hard to believe. Over the years, we’ve shot thousands of pictures, from bagpipe bands to dancers to county societies to Mummers, and so much more.

Since we can’t celebrate the parade this year, we thought it might be fun to take a look back at the parade through our photos. You might see someone you know … maybe even yourself. Photos by Denise Foley, Gwyneth MacArthur and yours truly, Jeff Meade.


A Pandemic-Era St. Patrick’s Fundraiser Benefits Local Irish Charities

This is the time of year when Philly-area Irish charities would be asking you to dig deep into your pockets to help them raise money for their big St. Patrick’s Day events.

With the coronavirus pandemic rules meant to keep us safe and attendance at live events seriously limited, those events just aren’t going to happen. We’ll miss them, but for now you’ll have to be satisfied—actually, we confidently predict that you will be well and truly satisfied—by a virtual fundraiser called Shamrock Aid 2021.

It’s scheduled for Wednesday, March 10, from 7 to 9 p.m. You’ll be able to see it on the Philadelphia St. Patrick’s Day Parade Facebook page . If you are typically inclined to support organizations dedicated to Irish causes, now is the time to give, and give generously.

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How to Be Irish in Philly

How to Be Irish in Philly this Week

St. Patrick’s Day is right around the corner. And although it won’t be the kind of St. Patrick’s Day we’re all used to, you can tell by all the events leading up to the day that it’s probably going to be better than you expected.

So here’s what’s coming up this week:

Friday, March 5

Seamus McGroary will be performing at Henry James Saloon, 577 Jamestown Avenue in Philly, from 6 to 9 p.m.

Neil Mac Thiarnáin and Moira Fanning return to the New Deck Tavern, 3408 Sansom Street in University, today at 6:30 p.m.

A bit later on, starting at 7 p.m., it’s Frank Daly of Jamison Celtic Rock in a solo act at Nick’s Roast Beef, 4501 Woodhaven Road West in Northeast Philadelphia. All CDC guidelines will be observed. (This’ll be the case for all the live events listed here.)

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How to Be Irish in Philly

How to Be Irish in Philly This Week

There are some more opportunities to hear live Irish music this weekend. In this time, it’s more important than ever to support our local musicians. You’ll also have an opportunity to help commemorate Bloody Sunday.

Here’s what’s up:

Friday, February 26

Irish Mike Jordan will perform at Henry James Saloon from 6 to 9 p.m. You’ll find the saloon at 577 Jamestown Avenue in Philadelphia.

Saturday, February 27

Frank Daly, of Jamison Celtic Rock, will be at the Mifflin Tavern, 1843 South 2nd Street, Philadelphia, from 6:30 to 10:30 p.m.

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