The goods: If you’re downtown and looking for beer, live music and waiters sporting kilts then head over to Brickell Irish Pub. The modern Irish bar and restaurant veers a bit on the kitschy side with servers (both male and female) dressed in tartan kilts but it doesn’t seem to bother the hordes of downtown professionals that pack the space on the weekends when live bands jam out classic rock. As the ample flat screens suggest, this cavernous pub doubles as a sports bar where friends gather on Sunday afternoons over pints of Guinness to watch the games. Come World Cup time, this is the place to be. Owned by the V&E Restaurant Group (the same folks who own Segafredo Brickell, Bal Harbour and Espanola Way) there’s a nightlife vibe to the place, with live music on the weekends, karaoke on Wednesdays and poker on Tuesday nights.
Ambiance: The digs are Dublin-style comfort: upholstered banquettes lining a raised platform and a polished 35-foot long bar dispensing 14 beers on tap (highlights include Murphy’s Red and Newcastle) and another 30 beers by the bottle. A handsome pool table holds court in the center of the room, while an mp3-stocked “jukebox” plays tunes on request.
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The grub: Irish pub grub and sports bar staples. Prices are slightly higher than your neighborhood Flannigan’s, but then again, the clientele here is more attractive, as is the interior. Starters are $10, sandwiches and salads average $14 and mains average $22. Popular items include a trio of beef sliders topped with Jameson Whiskey caramelized onions, fish and chips made with beer-battered cod and five different kinds of burgers including a “Johnny Boy” topped with blue cheese and “rashers,” Irish bacon. For traditional Irish food there’s a shepherd’s pie and a Guinness beef stew. Desserts include a Bailey’s Irish cream cheesecake and a whiskey-soaked bread pudding.
Verdict: Frosty brews, live music and attractive locals make this a lively destination downtown