Brews News

A Hundred Thousand Welcomes at Durty Nelly's

Durty Nelly's, Seven Hills

Eric Hann
Nestled away in the corner of a shopping plaza off of West Pleasant Valley Road in Cleveland is a hidden gem of a bar called Durty Nelly's. If you drive by too quickly and aren't looking for it you would have no idea what you’re missing. As you approach the front door that is surrounded by bricks you will notice a green awning with an Irish Gaelic phrase “Cead Mile Failte” which means “A Hundred Thousand Welcomes”.

Once you enter Durty Nelly's, the first thing that may surprise you is how large the bar actually is. The bar and a few small tables are up near the front door, but towards the back of the bar there is enough room to fit a few full-size tables, a kitchen, a pool table, a dance floor, arcade games, and a DJ booth. The walls are decked out with wood paneling, which I think fits perfect in any Irish bar. Strangely fitting, there is also an old school Demolition Man pinball machine.

I decided to stop in to speak with one of the bartenders on a Thursday afternoon and on this day there were four older men enjoying themselves at the bar drinking beer and watching television. The bartender working was Karen Diggins, who has been working at Durty Nelly's for the past nine years. “My favorite part about working here is interacting with people,” Diggins said. From what Karen told me, during the day they typically draw an older crowd, generally mainly made up of retired men.

Durty Nelly's isn't the type of bar that uses gimmicks and daily drink specials depending on the day of the week it is, but what they do have is reasonable prices 365 days a year, including $1.50 draft beer. Every weekend on Friday and Saturday nights, Durty Nelly's features a DJ or a band for your entertainment. It is a very friendly atmosphere and you never know what kind of fun may be in store depending on the night.

“It is never the same mundane day,” said Diggins.

While asking other bartenders at Durty Nelly's about the place a couple of them told me that they believed the bar was haunted, so I asked Karen about it. “A lot of bartenders will say they hear things,” Diggins said. One night Karen thought she heard someone whispering behind her when she was working behind the bar, but when she turned around she didn't see anyone. Karen thought she might have been hearing things, however one of her customers confirmed that they also heard the whispering. Karen also said she could have sworn she saw some sort of an animal run by her in the bar at one time.

It’s said that a former customer passed away at the bar a long time ago, and might be one reason why the bar appears to be haunted today. I can't blame whatever ghost decided to stick around in this bar, sounds like a great afterlife to me. With St. Patrick's Day right around the corner, do yourself a favor and be sure to grab a Guinness at Durty Nelly's. After the St. Patrick's Day parade is over the young children Irish Dancers will be making an appearance at Durty Nelly's, and corned beef will be served all day long.

Location: 1151 West Pleasant Valley Road, Seven Hills