McCloskey’s is a family tavern. Pat McCloskey, a native of Derry, Ireland, along with his partners, John and Annie Kane, bought the bar in 1934. Back then it was known as the Ardmore Cafe and retained the name until Pat became the sole proprietor in 1941. The management of the tavern was a family affair and many McCloskey family members worked there over the years. Pat’s son Patrick, known by the regulars as “Joe,” acquired the bar in 1957 and initially ran the bar with his mother and then later his wife Annie.
In the past decade, another local Irish family became more involved with the bar. Many members of the Doherty clan have tended bar or served a table or two over the years. So when Joe McCloskey decided to retire in 2010, it was fitting that the Doherty Family decided to partner with lifelong friend Jimmer McCafferty to carry on the McCloskey’s tradition. They grew up on the same street in Havertown and graduated from St. Aloysius and St. Joe’s Prep together. Both the Doherty and McCafferty families have relatives hailing from Donegal; the same county that former owner Joe’s mother grew up in. And both, being from very large Irish families themselves, felt up to taking on the task of keeping McCloskey’s Tavern as the local establishment with the great food and family feel that knowing Mainliners have come to love.