Monday, June 17, 2013

Bar #41 McGinty's Pub

Has a bar you ever really like closed and reopened as a different kind of bar? Did you secretly hope that you would hate the new bar. More importantly did it skew your perspective of this bar to like it less? This week a brewery asked me to try their new beer and return to the location of one of favorite, but now deceased, bars. Bar #41 is the recently resurrected McGinty's Pub.

First impressions: 1. Damn it, this place looks really nice. 2. They have a lot of beer on tap. 3. There are no females here. 4. This place looks like a bizarro version of the Church Bar.

First, the place is a nice mixture of classy and pub. There are leather couches, vintage light bulbs, a black fabric pool table and everything else is pretty nice as well.
They've added a new row of taps giving everyone a ridiculous amount of options. The 24 taps are separated into groups of four including fruit beers, (at least four) IPAs, eight Irish pub staples, four staples that for the most part don’t change and the last four are always revolving. The general manager Trent is still figuring out what he customers like, so the list will keep getting better with age. If you come visit in the coming months you'll be able to help craft which craft beers the pub will carry.
Recently a new brewery out of Elyria by the name of Franklin Brewing Company contacted me on Facebook. We have been posting back and forth. They have quickly found an initial bar in Lakewood to carry their new brew. They also quickly found a technology company to help them give people their new beer, Richard's Pale Ale, for free. I partook of this opportunity only 1 week later than I had planned, luckily they brought in another keg full of potentially free beer. I was horrified that I would hate their beer. If it sucked, I couldn't review differently. As much as I try to give bars a good spin, I try to be as honest as possible. It turns out, I did like it. I would have happily paid money for Franklin Brewing Company's Richard's Pale Ale. It's got a nice color to it and not too much or to little head. Richard's is a bit bitter but good to most people that like pale ales. It's also fairly light and very drinkable, a good summer choice.  Franklin Brewing Company even makes its taps in its brewery.
Two weeks ago, my wife and I were watching the History channel. A commercial for New Castle's new Bombshell repeatedly came on talking us into wanting one. I gave Johnny the mission to find them for a camp fire we were having that night. After calling to the local stores he was basically told that he was making stuff up. It turns out McGinty's Pub carries it. I of course had to try this mysterious beer. It has an interesting mix of flavor that appears to include butterscotch, honey, and almonds. This allows it to be a better than average golden ale that keeps you interested the entire glass but is light enough to allow for mass consumption.
During the first hour of our stay in McGinty's, the bar was full but women wouldn't show up till the Indians game was most of the way over. The bar is age range is basically 21-91 but mostly under 35. I'm not good at figuring out peoples ages unless I simply take a poll of everyone. That's why I usually don't bring it up but will probably add it in for the rest later on.

The reference to bizarro Church Bar is that a lot of the bar is the same but painted dark green. This includes the bar, 2/3rds of the taps, seating, fireplace except there isn't a green Mr. T. That being said why would they get rid of all the really nice furniture that was already there. It's a nice looking comfortable bar, I want to go there and sit in their second room and pretend it's my living room.

Here's quick story of McGinty's. Around the turn of the millennia Mr. McGinty and his two sons opened the bar. A couple years later the father wanted out and the sons were busy with their own cool stuff. Some new people took over and kept the name. In 2005, the owner of the Harry Buffalo bars bought it and turned it into the Church Bar. The Church Bar did well but not Harry Buffalo well. The Church Bar's owners approached Pat McGinty (original owner and owner of Plank Road Tavern.) He and 3 others bought it back and reopened McGinty's Pub.

McGinty's Pub has a great looking, comfortable environment with a friendly staff and a lot of good beer on staff. Trent the general manager is putting a lot of thought into the beer selection and it shows. I didn't want to like this bar but now I'm already looking forward to going back again soon. If you've ever asked why does Lakewood need another Irish bar, go to bar #41 and you'll see it's because McGinty's Pub (2.0) wasn't there yet.

The new bartender's first professional pour ever!
13751 Madison Ave.

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