St. Patrick’s Day is fast approaching, and for one reason or another, we all seem to enjoy having a bit o’ the Irish in us for one day per year. It’s one of those holidays that asks us to have fun above all else, and essentially gives us carte blanche to be drunk by 2 p.m., carousing on an epic bar hop, if we should so choose.
But there’s a lot more to St. Paddy’s Day than Shamrock Shakes, "Kiss me, I’m Irish" T-shirts, green beer, and dried out corned beef and cabbage. And day drinking gets really old, really fast. Thankfully, we just so happen to live in an age where not only are there more and more gourmands coming out of the woodwork every day, but the Internet also allows us to order just about any type of food we want, directly to our door.
Irish food is generally relatively easy to access; all you need to do is head down to your local Irish pub for something that at least resembles it. On a day like St. Patrick’s Day, though, attempting to brave the throngs all for a plate of corned beef might be the last way you’d like to spend the holiday. And while it’s relatively easy to go down to the store and pick up a six-pack of Guinness, you’d be hard-pressed to recreate an Irish meal in your home without planning in advance. Plenty of supermarkets stock authentic Irish products, but your best resource for a St. Patrick’s Day blowout is still the Internet. Here are the best websites to use to stock up on St. Patrick’s Day goodies, whether you’re planning a hearty meal for two or a full-on party.
FoodIreland.com: This website specializes in, obviously, Irish food, and they have just about everything you’ll need for a St. Paddy’s Day feast, from morning to midnight. They even have a special St. Patrick’s Day page, where all their best-selling items are assembled. And as opposed to buying all your items separately, they’ve gathered together everything you’ll need for a full Irish Breakfast (bangers, bacon, black pudding, white pudding, Irish butter, beans, tea, soda bread, scones, and marmalade), as well as some harder-to-find items like smoked fish platters and cured pork loin (also known as "boiling bacon").
Tommy Moloney’s: If it’s a traditional Irish dinner you’re after, you’ve come to the right place. Founded as a butcher shop in 1920 in Ireland, they’re now based in the U.S. and get all their pork from Amish farms. Their site has a world-class Irish specialty food collection, focusing on their homemade Irish-style sausages, corned beef and traditional puddings, meat pies, imported Irish butter, baked goods, and even a 3-pound smoked salmon. They’ll guarantee St. Pat’s delivery if you place your order by Wednesday, March 13.
Siopa.com: This website isn’t as food-focused (it specializes in all things Irish, from sweaters to Galway crystal), but their Irish Food Baskets make for great gifts as well as great St. Patrick’s Day supplies. Their offerings focus on high-end packaged goods; for example the Traditional Irish Feast Hamper includes Christmas pudding, brandy butter, tea, cookies, preserves, Irish whiskey cake, chocolates, mince pies, marmalade, coffee, lemon biscuits, brown soda bread mix, sticky toffee, and a bad of Tayto potato chips for good measure. These gift baskets are pricey, but all shipping is free until the holiday.
Mackenzie Limited: This high-end site specializes in restaurant-quality food that’s frozen and shipped directly to your door, and they offer a gourmet take on one of the perfect Irish dinner items: beef and Guinness pie. Their version fills a puff pastry crust with chunks of steak, fresh vegetables, and a creamy Guinness gravy. They also offer Grafton aged Cheddar, one of Ireland’s finest cheeses.
BritishSupplies.com: This site’s focus is on British food, but what really caught our eye are their varieties of meat pies, that quintessential drinking food that’s popular all throughout the U.K. and Ireland. This site will ship beef and onion, steak and ale, steak and kidney, meat and potato, and chicken tikka pies directly to your door, along with other classics including sausage rolls, Irish back bacon rashers, and black and white pudding. Back on FoodIreland, they’ve got Irish-style pies from Winstons Sausage Co., including birdies (meat-filled turnovers), Cornish pasties (meat and vegetables wrapped in a pastry crust), and straight-up beef meat pies.
Dan Myers is the Eat/Dine Editor at The Daily Meal. Follow him on Twitter @sirmyers.