September 2007


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Pubcrawl – Katie O’Brien’s -$-

Corner of NE 28th & Sandy

Tolerant and I drive by this place about 3 times a month, and we finally managed to stop in and check them out Friday night. Located on the corner of 28th and Sandy, they’re pretty easy to get to by both car and bus. Parking is on the street, but there was easy room right in front.

It wasn’t very crowded at the bar, and the dining area was empty which made us wonder a little. D├ęcor is fairly simple, with a collection of tap handles on one wall and various coasters stapled to the overhang above the bar. The seating area is raised higher than the rest of the room, with the bar proper and the games area sitting a couple steps lower so those seated at the tables have a view of the entire bar.

Atmosphere: As we walked in, I was starting to wonder if I was going to be able to smoke. For a smoking-ok bar, Katie’s is extremely clean. The ceiling is a dark green color instead of the usual nicotine-brown, and there wasn’t the usual telltale cloud hovering over the bar proper. The tall ceilings definitely helped in this regard.

The music being played was a bit on the loud side, which hindered conversation and had me saying “What?” a little too often. It was also a little too eclectic, and couldn’t find a genre. Some would say this is good, but in the 45 minutes or so that we were there I got annoyed by rap and hip-hop at least 4 times – which shouldn’t happen in an Irish pub.

Drinks: I was driving, so a simple soda was on my menu but Tolerant opted for a rum & coke. The rum was better than your typical well, and the bartender found the sweet spot in the proportions both times.

Food: Tolerant had had fish & chips the night before, so I got that this time. The batter was good, and held up well throughout the meal without getting soggy. Normally I order mine with extra tartar sauce because I am not overly fond of fish, but in this instance the small serving cup of sauce was enough – the fish didn’t need to be covered up. The chips were fries cooked in vegetable oil, but appeared house-cut and had a nice seasoning.

Tolerant ordered an “Irish” Dip sandwich – corned beef with a creamed horseradish sauce on a hoagie roll with au jus. The first bite put a great big smile on her face as she was trying to fan the spicy away, so I’ll take that as a positive vote.

Service: The only employee evident was the bartender, but she still managed to take care of us pretty well. Our orders were taken, delivered and taken away in an orderly fashion and we weren’t pestered or left looking around for absent staff.

The Verdict: Good food at a reasonable price in portions that were too large for either one of us to finish. Service and atmosphere combined into a pleasant experience, and we will probably try them again on another night to see if they can pick a more even music flow.

We liked it, and give Katie O’Brien’s Pub a solid “B”.

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