The Costa del Sol has long been home to a thriving Irish community and there are numerous bars and restaurants spread along the coast that cater especially for them.
Most of these bars, of course, will claim to serve the “best pint of Guinness outside of Dublin”, be the “most authentic Irish pub in the area”, or offer the “best craic on the coast”, but few of these bars can genuinely live up to their claims.
However, one small Irish bar in Torremolinos, which, incidentally, does not claim to be anything other than a decent Irish pub, has recently triumphed in the Irish Pubs Global Awards 2017.
Pat Murphy's Bar in Montemar, Torremolinos, won the trophy for 'Best Bar Person' at the awards ceremony in the Round Room at the Mansion House in Dublin last week.
Pat Murphy's had been nominated for several categories in the European section, including Irish Pub of the Year and Best Irish Community Pub, but it was the charm and charisma of owner, Tara Tallon, that scooped the prize of best bar person.
“We were shocked at first, but once it sunk in, we were extremely pleased to have won. Although we had been nominated for several awards, we didn't actually think we would win. It's just the most amazing thing,” Tara explained to SUR in English.
The aim of the competition is to promote a set of standards in Irish pubs and a campaign was launched to find the best of the truly genuine Irish establishments throughout Europe.
The competition called for customers to vote for their favourite Irish bars and restaurants, and Pat Murphy's had to beat off some pretty strong competition from the hundreds of Irish establishments that participated in the competition.
Tara and husband, John, both from Dublin, have owned Pat Murphy's since 2003 and over the years the bar has become one of the most popular pubs in what is known as Irish Square, so called because of the vast amount of Irish expats, visitors and tourists who frequent the area.
The couple were unable to attend the ceremony to receive their award. Instead, John's nephew accepted it on their behalf, although a grand celebration followed when Tara received the good news from Dublin on the night of the ceremony.
“We feel honoured to have been voted for by our customers and we would like to thank them for the opportunity to live up to their expectations. We feel that all the hard work has finally paid off,” Tara said with a beaming smile.