Mackey’s Public House Closes in Crystal City

by ARLnow.com April 25, 2011 at 1:23 pm 7,435 25 Comments

(Updated at 9:40 p.m.) Mackey’s Public House (320 S. 23rd Street) has closed its doors in Crystal City.

The pub served its last customers this weekend, an employee said today. The D.C. location at 1823 L Street NW will remain open.

Mackey’s catered largely to the Crystal City lunch and after-work crowds. It had sidewalk seating that was popular on warm weather days. No word yet on why the pub closed, although a recent health department inspection of the restaurant turned up more than a dozen violations, including the presence of cockroaches and fruit flies.

Mackey’s is the second Irish pub to close in the Crystal City area in the past 6 months. McGinty’s Irish Pub, in the Market Square at Potomac Yard development, folded in December.

Photo via Mackeyspub.com

  • DT

    What a shame. I am close to the owners and had no idea they were closing.

    • Glebe Roader

      I guess you’re not as close to the owners as you think, eh?

      • ArlForester

        I guess you know business owners who go around talking up closing shop. I don’t.

  • South Arlington

    Mackey’s seemed like it was an also-ran in the bar market in Crystal City, especially with BW3 opening next door. Seems like most of the local bar traffic gravitates to Crystal City Sports Pub or maybe Tortoise and Hare.

    • Mark

      Actually, I thought it was refreshingly distinct from the rest of the Crystal City bar scene…

  • CrystalMikey

    Man, guess my neighborhood is bad luck to the Irish. 🙁

  • Aaron

    There was one barback who always went above and beyond to keep that place running smoothly, fixing the kitchen’s and waitstaff’s constant snafus. I hope he lands on his feet somewhere else soon.

  • If any of the staff are looking for work please contact me on [email protected] urgently as I have numerous openings in Irish pub’s & restaurant’s in the DC, Virginia and Maryland area immediately.


  • Henry Spencer

    So another locally owned restaurant in CC bites the dust. Could be that the lease was up, and the landlord upped the rent to make way for an Olive Garden or some such shite.

  • Cyrus

    Mackey’s closing is bad. MMmmmmkaaayy….

  • SamsontheCat

    Ah man! That was the first place…second place (ate at Jaleo first just remembered) I ever went in Crystal City.

    It wasn’t the best for watching sports and seemed like most of the clientel at the bar were people from the apartments upstairs, but the food wasn’t bad and they had giant pot pies.

  • Me

    First off we didn’t have numerous health dept. violations…. The owners decided not to renew the lease since they have a lot of other businesses to run and this one made the least profit. That’s all. And we closed on Saturday night, not Friday.

    • Maria


      Click Restaurant Inspections on the left.
      Type in Mackey’s.
      Click on it.
      Click the top one that says “Routine Inspection”

      Not that hard to find. He didn’t claim it was the reason the restaurant closed, but it is correct information.

      • Mark

        Yeah, but he certainly implied or suggested it might be the cause. It was, at teh very least, a very irresponsible speculation. And while there were violations–they were not big deals, nor were they “out of the norm” with the inspection results from the other restaurants in Crystal City–at least the ones I sampled.

    • SoCo Resident

      Were they up-todate in paying the county meal tax? OR, are they leaving a big unpaid bill?

  • Kat

    What a bummer. We were out of town this weekend so we never got to say goodbye to “our bar.” At least I work down the street from the DC location so I can still get those nachos.

    • ArlForester

      Pretty amazing that the best nachos around are in an Irish bar.

      • Rick

        I was wondering why an irish bar had pico in their fridge. It wasn’t properly stored, but it was there

  • boo

    Sad.. I liked going to a bar that wasn’t some obnoxious chain. I remeber visiting there during snomageddon last year. Those guys were troopers!

  • John Andre

    Expect some of these closures around Crystal City and perhaps Ballston as DoD employees move out in BRAC-related relocations. Some office vacancies may lead to restaurant closings.

  • Chris

    Too bad. Hopefully with the space opening up and the impending Boeing move something cool can replace it. I know that South Arlington could use a local craft beer mecca so that we don’t have to go downtown or into Courthouse.

  • Arl_Bill

    It’s a shame, will miss it. We had a regular card game there every Wednesday nite.

  • ArlForester

    Word is a BBQ place is taking the spot. No more details.

  • Mark

    What a shame. This was a great place with a great staff. I was really surprised to walk down the street and see a “closed” sign on the door. Now I see an application for a liquor license from some Memphis barbecue place.

  • James

    This is great news. The service there was terrible at best. The food was passable and the beer okay, although selection was limited.

    Whatever takes its place is going to be better


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