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Archive for the ‘pub’ Category

The bar was shut down in January, apparently for too many violations.  The sign on the door says the place was supposed to re-open in February, which has obviously come and gone.

My guess is that the place is closed for good.

 

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I’m pretty sure I’ve written about this before, probably in the context of watching college football games.  I have slightly different feelings about my favorite places to watch a game in the city, so I figured I’d tackle this topic again.

Admittedly, I’ve not watched a sporting event in every single bar in town.  They all have TV’s so pretty much any bar is a “sports bar” of sorts.  But, I’ve been checking out new (to me) places during this playoff run the Wings are in (which, sadly, is probably going to be cut short.)

Right in the city, my thoughts about some of the more well-known bars are:

The Box Bar — The Box is a great bar as far as drink variety and menu are concerned.  There are two huge projection TV’s and some smaller TV’s around the bar.  But, I think it’s actually kind of hard to watch a 3 hour game there considering the way the TV’s and seating are laid out.  Projection TV’s also have lousy pictures.  The Box is also just a smidge pricey.  On a 1 to 5 star scale, I give sports viewing at the Box 2.5 stars.

Doyle’s Tavern — Doyle’s is intimate and there is plenty of good seating in front of or around the few screens they have.  It also has the covered patio with a TV if you want to sit “outside” to catch the game.  Doyle’s isn’t necessarily the most comfortable place to park for hours, but the drink prices are really good.  I think Doyle’s is the best value in the city in terms of drinks and isn’t that what you want if you’re going to watch a game at a bar?  4 stars.

Hermann’s Olde Town Grille — Hermann’s has good food and plenty of seating around TV’s.  It’s a cool place as well.  I would like it better if the drinks were better priced.  Admittedly, I’m a bit of snob as far as alcohol goes, so specials on cheap domestic beer don’t get factored into to my feelings about a pub.  I don’t drink Bud Light so it matters not to me if a place runs specials on it.  Having said that, I was a tad disappointed that I paid for a double glass of whiskey only to see that it wasn’t, to my eyes, a double pour.  If it was a double pour, the single pour is awfully small.  The price would’ve been great had there actually been 2x the amount of booze in the glass.  Doyle’s has Hermann’s beat for pours.  For that reason, I rate Hermann’s 3.5 stars.

1999 Tavern — Unless you catch the game out in the “garage,” on a nice summer or fall day, the tavern’s really not the best place to catch a game.  It’s a nice pub and restaurant.  I love their chicken.  But to watch a game at a place, I want to like more than the food.  2.5 stars.

Ironwood Grill — In my humble opinion, the Ironwood doesn’t know what it wants to be.  The decor suggests that the place is a slightly upscale bar.  But there are TV’s all over the place and it’s a noisy place to eat.  To watch a game there is fine, but there’s something about it that doesn’t draw me in for that reason.  It just seems like an odd fit.  2.0 stars.

Sean O’Callaghan’s  — Sean’s is the best place to be for a sport popular across the water, like soccer or rugby.  I’ve seen some Wings games there and I didn’t necessarily like the vibe.  It was the place to be, though, for last year’s World Cup matches.  I was lucky enough to get in there to see USA-England, which was quite a match.  For that experience, alone, I give Sean’s 3.5 stars.

Just because a place has a bunch of TV’s does not mean I want to try to watch a game at it, especially not start-to-finish.  It seems like all restaurants these days have TV’s all over the place.  That’s something, actually, that I find disappointing.  Sometimes it’s nice to eat in a quiet setting where there is little outside stimulation.  I guess we no longer just eat these days.  We have to be entertained constantly.

When you want to catch a game, though, all those TV’s can come in quite handy.  If you like getting out for a game and a drink or two, and you want to keep your money in town, I don’t think you can go wrong with any of the place I mentioned.  Some are just better than others.

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Here’s a nice article about a local church’s (mine) monthly “Theology on Tap” events which are held at the Box Bar.

The next meeting is  Tuesday, October 12, at 7:00 pm

http://plymouth-mi.patch.com/articles/beer-the-bible-and-the-box-bar

Essentially, this is what Theology on Tap is all about

Since February, on the second Tuesday evening of every month, TOT participants have gathered in the back room of the Box Bar for food, drink and discussion. Rather than an across-the-table conversation friends might have, Trinity TOT uses something akin to a debate format. The topic of the evening — which invariably can be discussed from three to six or more points of view, theories or perspectives — is put forth by presenters who advance a given position on the topic. After each position is presented or advanced, as overseen by the moderator, the topic is open for question and answer or even debate amongst those in attendance.

This is no mere Bible study or Sunday School session. Rather than dissecting a few Bible passages or simply retelling Bible stories, TOT hits broader philosophical and theological topics. “The purpose of Theology on Tap,” MacKinnon says, “is to address what we as a growing need to discuss more ‘meaty’ topics.”  “We want to go beyond feel-good, self-help, relational types of books and things that seem to predominate Christian media today.”

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Many of my friends are up in arms about the smoking ban which took effect statewide on May 1.  They do not object so much about the elimination of smoking from bars and restaurants but are bothered by the perceived governmental intrusion.  I’m a believer in less being m0re when it comes to government, but I have to say that the smoking ban is long overdue.

More to the point, the smoking ban is a godsend for many of us non-smokers.  In the last week I’ve been to three (3) bars in the City of Plymouth that I avoided in the past because of the heavy smoke: Hermann’s Olde Town Grille, Doyle’s Tavern and Ironwood Grill.  I, for the first time, was able to enjoy a drink or two in these places without stinging eyes and burning lungs.

I have no data to back this up, but it appears that the smoking ban has had little or no negative impact on these businesses.  All three places were bustling when I was there.   Hermann’s, in particular, was packed Saturday night.  A few smokers drifted in and out on occasion to smoke out on the sidewalk, but I heard no grumbling or complaints.

For my wife and me, the ban has brought us back to the pubs.  I expect we’ll continue to hang out more in town now that we can do so in relative fresh air.

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On Thursday May 20th, from 7 to 9 pm, Sean O’Callaghan’s is holding a shephard’s pie eating contest.
The biggest glutton will receive an official shepherd’s pie trophy, $100 in cash, and a sheperd’s pie champion t-shirt

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On Thursday, April 15th, from 6 p.m. to midnight, there were be a pub-n’-grub crawl in downtown Plymouth, which will include these bars and restaurants:

  • Ironwood Grill
  • Penn Grill
  • Sean O’Callaghan’s
  • E. G. Nick’s
  • 1999 Tavern

The cost is $5 per adult for buffets at all five pubs, a T-shirt & raffle ticket.  Raffle proceeds will benefit local charities.

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Admittedly, I don’t have an ounce of raw data to back up what I am about to say.  I’m going simply by the good old “eyeball test.”

It appears that business is OK in downtown Plymouth.  It is entirely possible that a lot of the businesses downtown are hauling in less profit.  Some might be losing money.  But when I drive through downtown, I see lots of activity.  It seems that people are still eating, drinking and shopping there.   We hear nothing but doom and gloom about the economy, but traffic and bodies downtown suggests to me that people are still doing what they’ve been doing for years.

There are a few businesses that have closed in the past year.  That’s nothing new, though.   Businesses downtown come and go in cycles, even in good times.  I’ve seen it over the years.  Besides, while there have been a few places that closed downtown, Old Village seems to be growing, with a few new businesses coming in.

I would be fascinated to see the data.  I could be completely wrong.  I hope all the busy-ness I see is a sign that we’re getting through these difficult economic times.

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Maybe I wasn’t paying attention last year, but I believe this is a brand new event.  The Downtown Development Authority, with the participation of the stores and restaurants downtown, is throwing a Mardi Gras celebration starting noon the 2/21.

Plymouth-Canton student art will be on display.  Merchants will give out beads. Steve King & the Diddlies will play at 5:00 p.m. There will be “kid friendly” events in Kellogg Park as well.

After the concert you are invited to “hang out as partygoers converge on downtown for a night of fun and late night parties. The party continues into the night at any of over 30 shops, bars and restaurants.”

More info, if you really need it, is found at http://www.downtownplymouth.org/CivicAlerts.asp?AID=103

I’m not sure an outside party will have a lot of draw in late February here in Michigan.  There again, the ice sculpture shows are well attended, even when it is deathly cold.  This is clearly just another event to draw people into the downtown area.  Plymouth certainly doesn’t have a Mardi Gras tradition.  I hope it goes over well and people have a great time (and the businesses downtown make loads of cash.)

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A Wayne County jury awarded the estate of a man killed in a car accident $4.5 Million for having over served the driver of the vehicle in which the intoxicated patron was a passenger.

Here’s an article with more details

Plymouth tavern tagged for $4.5 million in deadly crash | hometownlife.com | the Observer & Eccentric Newspapers, Mirror Newspapers and Hometown Weeklies

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1999 Tavern is one of my favorite places to grab a bite to eat downtown.  It is laid back like a sports bar but looks like a fine steak house.  If you want a warm, casual atmosphere, be seated in the main dining area.  If you want to have a beer or two and catch a game, grab a seat at the bar or out in the “garage.”

I confess that I have only tried a handful of items on the menu, but I’ve loved everything there I’ve sampled.  I loved the half barbecued chicken dinner and the pulled pork sandwich.  The serving sizes are generous.  The prices are reasonable.  You can get a good meal for $10 to $15.

The bar has a good liquor selection.  To my eye, there did not seem to be a lot of variety in draught beers.  I confess to having never asked about the Tavern’s selection of bottled beers.  The Box Bar has so many different beers — hundreds! — that I have not paid a whole lot of attention to the beer selection elsewhere in town.

Most of the time, the service has been great, and I’ve never had anything less than at least adequate service.  Like any other restaurant, some waitstaff there are better than others.  Based on my experiences, I would be surprised to ever hear any service “horror stories.”

Good atmosphere.  Good service.  Good prices.  Good food.  Thumbs up!

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