Grace O’Malley’s – Chicago

14 06 2009
  • 1416 S. Michigan Avenue
  • Chicago, IL 60605
  • (312) 588-1800
  • Website
  • Menu
Grace OMalleys on South Michigan Avenue near 14th Street in Chicago.

Grace O'Malley's on South Michigan Avenue near 14th Street in Chicago.

If we’re going to go to a concert in Chicago, you know I’m going to find someplace nearby for a pre-concert meal.  J and I were meeting my brother and his wife near Soldier Field for the Kenny Chesney concert.  Both of us decided to take public transportation due to the horrendous parking around Soldier Field.  My brother took the Metra Electric Line from Univerity Park and J and I took the El Orange Line from Midway.  Both trains have a stop near Roosevelt Street.

From the train stops, Grace O’Malley’s is less than a half mile walk south on Michigan Avenue.  For my brother and his wife, it was a horrible walk.  It was pouring rain.  By the time J and I got off the CTA, the rain had stopped.  I had made 1:45 reservations and had everything been on time, we would have arrived just before the reservation.  Instead, some punks decided they were going to tag our train while it was stopped at the 35th Street Station.  The conductor had to get out and chase them away.  We were sitting in the station for ten minutes while all this went on. 

My brother and sister-in-law got to the restaurant and got our table just as were were turning down Michigan Avenue.  It was a little over a two block walk for us, but we found Grace O’Malley’s on the west side of Michigan Avenue in the middle of the 1400 block.  Read the rest of this entry »





The Irish Pub & Grill

26 03 2009
  • 1910 W. Saginaw Street
  • Lansing, MI 48915
  • (517) 482-3916
  • No Known Website
  • Menu
Irish Pub & Grill on Saginaw Street in Lansing.

Irish Pub & Grill on Saginaw Street in Lansing.

Over the last year, we’ve gotten a lot of recommendations.  The one place that’s been recommended probably more than any is the Irish Pub & Grill.  We kept making plans to go on a Saturday night when they have karaoke, but something always came up and we never made it.  We were out in Delta Township this morning and come lunch time, finally took the recommendations.

The Irish Pub & Grill is on Saginaw Street just after Saginaw Highway splits into two one way roads.  There’s a corner parking lot on Saginaw and Cleo Street which is a little tricky to get into.  The entrance to the pub is on the corner of the building.  There’s a big, heavy wooden door that leads into a large bar and pub space. 

When you get past the door, you end up in the bar area.  There’s a long bar that runs along the wall with TV’s mounted above and behind.  All were tuned to ESPN.  The rest of the space is divided into two dining areas.  The one in the bar area, where we sat, has tables scattered through the space as well as pub style tables built into the support beams.  The other room has more tables as well as the dart boards and pool tables. Read the rest of this entry »





Goal Post Pub – Oak Lawn, IL

9 03 2009
  • 5207 1/2 95th Street
  • Oak Lawn, IL 60453
  • (708 ) 422-5275
  • Website
The Goal Post Pub on 95th Street in Oak Lawn, IL

The Goal Post Pub on 95th Street in Oak Lawn, IL

OK, here’s the set up.  J and I were in Oak Lawn for one of her friend’s surprise birthday party.  Supposedly, we were in town because I was working.  Since I was working, J asked two of her friend’s (birthday girl included) if they wanted to go to dinner.  They went to their favorite restaurant in LaGrange.  Halfway through dinner, I called J telling her I got out of work early, her parents weren’t home, and I didn’t have a key to get in so I went to a bar to watch the basketball games.  As the dinner wore on, I was getting crankier and crankier because I had to sit at a bar and wait for them.  In reality, I was at the bar, but I was there with the birthday girl’s husband, parents, and fifty of her closest friends.  When the three ladies got to the bar I was at, J called me again and told me to meet her in the parking lot.  I had just ordered a beer, so she was gonna have to come in.   The other friend, said they should come in and say hi since I was in such a bad mood because I was stuck at a bar by myself.  That did it.  They got the birthday girl to come in first.  I was sitting at a bar by myself and they could see me when the walked in.  The party goers were behind a wall.  When the birthday girl got close enough, I pointed behind her.  She turned around, everyone yelled surprise and she jumped twenty feet.  Totally fooled.  Had no idea it was coming. 

The ironic thing (to me anyway) is that the party was a bar called The Goal Post in downtown Oak Lawn.  The bar expanded into the business that used to be next door.  The last business to use that space was the birthday girl’s women’s only gym.  I thought it was funny.  I don’t know if anyone else did. Read the rest of this entry »





Fox’s Restaurant & Pub – Oak Lawn, IL

7 02 2009
  • 9240 S. Cicero Avenue
  • Oak Lawn, IL 60435
  • (708 ) 499-2233
  • Website
  • Menu
Foxs Restaurant & Pub on South Cicero Street in Oak Lawn, IL

Fox's Restaurant & Pub on South Cicero Street in Oak Lawn, IL

The thing I absolutely love about going home is the food.  The south side of Chicago is home to some great restaurants and J’s parents love showing me all their favorite spots.  One of the places I heard them talk about quite a bit was Fox’s Restaurant & Pub, so I suggested going there for dinner.  J’s mom had some coupons that were about to expire, so that’s what we decided on.

Fox’s Restaurant & Pub in Oak Lawn is on South Cicero and 92nd Street.  There are four locations total in the Chicago area.  Other restaurants are in Chicago, Orland Park, and Plainfield.  J asked her mom if she should call and get reservation.  The answer was no because Fox’s is huge.

Fox’s looks like an Irish pub even thought it’s not the typical “we got our bar from Ireland and only serve Guiness” Irish pub.  When you walk in, you’re met by a hostess who then takes you down a long hallway to the main dining room.  There are also two other levels that host private parties and overflow dining on busy nights.  Read the rest of this entry »





O’Toole’s of Novi

14 12 2008
OTooles of Novi on Novi Road down the road from Twelve Oaks Mall

O'Toole's of Novi on Novi Road down the road from Twelve Oaks Mall

Our tour of Michigan continued today as we made our way East to Novi.  When we woke up, the choices were Ann Arbor or Novi.  I chose Novi.  I shouldn’t be allowed to pick things. 

Let me back up and explain a little.  The goal today was to find a new shirt for J.  She had something from H & M that she really liked and wanted to go there again.  The closest H & M stores are Novi and Ann Arbor.  She talked about Zingerman’s many times this week.  I should have just took the hint.  Instead, I wanted to go someplace new.  Things were fine until we got five miles from our exit.  MDOT decided to START construction on a Saturday two weeks before Christmas.  We sat in traffic for 40 minutes….20 of those were at a complete stop.  Crews were painting lines.  It was ridiculous.  That just set the day off on a bad note.

After finally making it to our exit, we took a right on to Novi Road and headed away from the mall and big commercial area.  About a mile down the road, we came up a little bar set back quite a ways.  It’s not what you would expect in such a highly commercialized area. 

When walked in around two o’clock on a Saturday afternoon.  There were a few people at the bar watching basketball, but the dining room was mostly empty.  Around the bar, there are some pub tables.  On the other side of the room, there are some booths and regular four tops.  I chose the pub table hoping we’d be close enough to the bar that the waitress would be on top of things.  Again, I was mistaken. Read the rest of this entry »





Black Rose Irish Pub

21 09 2008
  • 100 Ionia Ave. SW
  • Grand Rapids, MI 49503
  • (616) 456-7673
  • Website
  • Menu
Black Rose Irish Pub near Van Andel Arena in downtown Grand Rapids

Black Rose Irish Pub near Van Andel Arena in downtown Grand Rapids

After spending a whole bunch of time planning out meals and asking for suggestions, we threw that all out the window and decided to just wing it for lunch Saturday afternoon in downtown Grand Rapids.  I’m not sure what we were expecting, but we were kind of hoping for a little walkable shopping district.  We didn’t find it, but we did find a few restaurants near Van Andel Arena.  The circus was in town the day we were down there so all the parking lots only had event parking at $7.  We ended up driving around for another ten minutes looking for a meter.  We finally found one a few blocks away.

The Black Rose sits right across the street from arena on an old brick street in downtown Grand Rapids.  The building really sticks out.  It’s a nice corner building decorated in the typical Irish pub fashion.  When we stepped inside, we were met by a host who took us to the non-smoking section behind the bar.  The decor inside is, again, typical of an Irish pub.  There is a lot of dark woods, Guinness signs, and the such.  A waitress came over menus which were pretty thick.  We ordered drinks and looked over the menu.  It had been a few days since I had a burger, so that’s what I went with. Read the rest of this entry »





Claddagh Irish Pub

14 07 2008
  • 2900 Town Centre Blvd.
  • Lansing, MI 48912
  • (517) 484-2523
  • Website
  • Menu
The Claddagh Irish Pub in Eastwood Towne Centre

The Claddagh Irish Pub in Eastwood Towne Centre

My parents had come to town for the final day of Common Ground to see Trace Adkins.  After a four hour drive, they were a little hungry and it was still way to early to head to Riverfront Park, so we decided to find a place for dinner.  One of our first weeks in Lansing, we went and found Edgewood Towne Centre and noticed an Irish pub on one end.  Since pub food is usually a sure bet with everybody in my family, we headed out to Lake Lansing Road for some grub.

Claddagh is a chain of fifteen Irish Pubs located in the midwest with the home office in Solon, OH (you know, “we’re going bowling, so don’t leave her in Solon.  Moon over Parma, tonight!”  I love Drew Carey 🙂 )There are only two locations in Michigan with the other being in Livonia.  It was a beautiful day so we opted for the patio over the dining room.  We got a quick look at the inside and it’s a gorgeaous pub.  Very typical of what you expect.  Lots of dark woods with a huge horseshoe shaped bar in the middle.  The really interesting feature was the pub tables located near the bar.  They took old whiskey barrels and put a table top on them.  I noticed it when we were walking out and I actually went back to take a closer look.  It was a really cool idea and added nicely to the overall theme. Read the rest of this entry »