How To Get a Shamrock at Tom Bergin’s Tavern

Shamrock at Tom Bergin's Tavern by Caroline on Crack
Shamrock at Tom Bergin's Tavern by Caroline on Crack

Wanna see your name up there in shamrocks?

When the new and improved Tom Bergin’s Tavern on Fairfax Avenue debuted back in May, everyone wondered what happened to its shamrock program. For those not familiar, for decades the 76-year-old bar would reward its regulars by hanging up a shamrock with the patron’s name on it on its walls. For the renovation the old shamrocks, some of them cigarette smoke stained, were dusted off and painstakingly returned to their spot on the wall. What L.A. drinker hasn’t wished to be immortalized with a shamrock at Tom Bergin’s Tavern?

Now the tavern has announced that it’s starting up the shamrock selection process again! And as before whether you get a shamrock is up to the bar staff who will meet each month to submit their nominations. A lucky winner will be picked and then get a party to celebrate their indoctrination into the exclusive shamrock club.

The bar is being coy about how you can increase your chances of getting nominated other than to say “you just need to stand out to the staff, which will most likely involve making regular appearances.”

But I decided to come up with my own suggestions on how to do just that at Tom Bergin’s, and it doesn’t include simply tipping well or wearing a rainbow ‘fro to stand out.

  1. Show up when they’re airing football games at the bar and always root for the New Orleans Saints…even when they’re not playing. Who dat?
  2. Don’t just show up for the drinking, they also have Tuesday night specials and weekend brunch.
  3. Order their Irish coffee every time you go in and declare it’s the best you’ve ever had anywhere and mean it.
  4. This is a no-brainer but get on a first name basis with everyone who works there, from the bus boys to the hostess to the servers to the bartenders.
  5. Commit their Irish whiskey list to memory and be able to order without looking at it.

Good luck!

Updated: I asked Director of Operations Kat Witt for suggestions on how folks can win a nomination and she replied:

I asked around and I got a few good answers: a regular known to several members of our team (coming in at different times); a good story teller; a day drinker; an adventurous eater/ drinker; likely to come in when it’s slower (not getting lost in the crowd). And then there were obvious answers: bribery (candy was mentioned 3x) and being nice. Plus, we have a group of about 30 Saints fans coming in regularly. At the start of the season I promised a shamrock to anyone who was here for every game. We are down to two Who Dats still working on perfect attendance. :)

Tom Bergin’s Tavern
840 South Fairfax Avenue
Los Angeles, California 90036 (map)
Facebook: Tom Bergin’s Tavern
Twitter: @TomBergins

4 Responses to How To Get a Shamrock at Tom Bergin’s Tavern
  1. Kat
    November 8, 2012 | 11:57 am

    Good suggestions. Playing to the Black & Gold will always get my attention! ;)

  2. [...] Local cocktail Blogger CarolineonCrack.com shares tips on how one might better their chances of standing out to the Bergin’s staff…How to Get a Shamrock at Tom Bergin’s Tavern. [...]

  3. Jay
    November 29, 2012 | 2:20 pm

    Unfortunately the Shamrocks were NOT painstakingly returned to their spots – they were haphazardly returned to the wall – many of them obscured (especially the older ones). Although it was SOMEWHAT of an amusing game to find my Shamrock on the wall – along with my wife (who is now across the room instead of next to me) and my best friend (who is at a third compass point – we all used to be together). Bergins used to be a second home. The Shamrock on the wall was extremely difficult to achieve and a true badge of honor. Although I am not pleased with all of the changes at Bergins and the general corporate-ized feel (servers can’t serve someone they know?!? Drinks poured into jiggers for precise pours – it feels like an Irish TGI Fridays in there now) – which has stopped me returning. I hope that time will smooth out the wrinkles and I might return to Bergins where walking in the door will feel like coming home again – instead of into a place where I might as well be taking a number.

    The mysterious and allusive policy behind Shamrocks is a good start. I hope that trend continues.

    Oh yeah, and tell them to bring back the Juke.

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