The success of chains like TGI Fridays has given rise to the restaurant decor trend of wall-to-wall knickknacks. But for anyone looking for collections a bit more interesting than license plates, vinyl records, and movie posters, there’s hope. A select few establishments display incredible items on their walls or, for those who know where to look, in their back rooms or basements.
In Glendalough, Ireland, a bar hides a room devoted to rare editions of Irish literature, from James Joyce to Bram Stoker. In Rome, a McDonald’s displays a piece of a 4th-century wall. From unusual automata to treasured murals, here are seven restaurants and bars where patrons eat beside priceless art and amazing memorabilia. Just try not to spill anything.