The Irish Times' Generation Emigration project is on the hunt for the best Irish pub in the world outside Ireland. The following is one of the nominations. To read more click here.
It’s billed as “Prague’s cozy Irish Pub”, and it really lives up to it’s name. I was there last Saturday and there was a roaring fire going while we watched Ireland’s rugby match.
It was also the first of Prague’s Irish pubs to adopt a non-smoking policy, and the pub is now really family friendly, with parents happy to bring their children with them on a weekend afternoon.
The owner, Frank Haughton, is a proud Irishman who is a prominent businessman in Prague. At one time he owned seven pubs in the city, but now in his 60s he has scaled down to two, of which The Joyce is his personal favourite.
The pub is very much a focal point for the expat community in Prague. Besides the Irish (from North and South), you will find British, Americans, Canadians, South Africans and French people regularly using the James Joyce.
Frank Haughton is a big fan of Irish culture. He is also a big fan of James Joyce, and arranges occasional readings from many of his famous works.
The beer is good in the James Joyce. The best Czech beers are available, and the Guinness is as good as any pint pulled in Dublin.
There’s live music most weekends and the staff are great, including David - a Czech with an Irish accent - who lived and worked in Ireland for a number of years.
The staff know all the regulars by name, and couldn’t be more helpful, always on hand to call a taxi or book a table.
At the Joyce, you can buy Tayto Crisps, Cadbury's Cream Eggs, Galaxy chocolate and lots of other little goodies that are not available in Prague.
In a modern twist, the Joyce also has a curry menu. The Thai Green Chicken Curry is a masterpiece.
However, the best thing about the James Joyce is the atmosphere. As soon as you walk in, you can tell it’s a great place to have a pint.