Every Monday night, The Blarney Stone opens its doors to a very special group of people—the geeks. Their weekly hosted trivia night, lovingly called "Geeks Who Drink," allows eggheads and trivia buffs of all walks of life to come together and test their wits as they feast on Irish classics such as the shepherd’s pie and halibut and chips. Meanwhile, cozied up to the bar or tucked behind a table, those who hide their geekiness under a bushel basket can mutter the answers under their breath while nursing an expertly poured pint of Guinness or tearing into one of the pub’s many flavorful burgers. In addition to the trivia night, patrons can satisfy their need for competition with NFL broadcasts and an accompanying football breakfast, a big-screen hookup to a Nintendo Wii, and paired pool tables and dart boards.
Sisters Carey Williams and Lisa Marcotte bartended their way through college at the University of Illinois, but their love of the restaurant world didn’t go away after graduation. Carey followed up with culinary school and spent a stint as a caterer before joining Lisa to open Marcotte's Bar & Grill. Now she runs the kitchen, crafting a menu of bar food that ranges from buffalo wings and chicken-salad sandwiches to certified Black Angus burgers and thin-crust pizzas. In addition to the delicious food, the two sisters also entice guests with their family-friendly pub space’s amenities, which include free WiFi, patio seating in warmer months, and weekly events such as bingo, karaoke, and trivia night.
The Lingering Black Death sounds like its best feature is that it can only happen once. However, it happens as many times as you like at The Linger Martini Bar, where the moniker refers to a potent cocktail—a blend of absinthe, Pages Parfait Amour, and Bombay Gin is cut with cherry bitters, a sugar cube, and a dash of sweet champagne. The Death is just one of the bar’s 25 specialty drinks, which incorporate liquors such as Patron, Ciroc, Jose Cuervo, and Bacardi Limon. Patrons who leave their pet woodpeckers at home can enjoy cocktails and appetizers at a 25-foot walnut bar, or lounge on a comfy couch or in a low-clung captain’s chair. And for a bit of entertainment, they can try their hand at five machines with video slots and video poker, or enjoy the sounds of live music that never requires a cover.
Specializing in the art of nail design, Tracy Nails Salon’s team of technicians spend their days gilding nails in vibrant coats of chip-free polish. While their focus remains on digits, staffers also bustle about the salon restoring radiance to complexions with meticulously applied facials or easing shoulders achy from serving as a perch for overweight parrots with the soothing kneads of a relaxing massage.
Within warm, inviting pub of Jack Desmonds, a menu laden with traditional Irish entrees, savory sandwiches, bold burgers, and scrumptious salads transports patrons across the ocean without requiring a plane ticket. Customers can quickly quiet talkative tummies with irish-curry fries ($5.95) or Blarney Balls, potato croquettes with bacon, scallions, and parmesan cheese, served with sour cream ($4.95). Classic dinner dishes such as shepherd's pie ($8.95) and bangers 'n' mash—Irish sausages served with an entourage of mashed potatoes and Irish baked beans ($7.95)—are known to inspire sudden spoutings of limericks, while foods such as the veggie wrap ($6.95) and classic caesar salad ($5.95) sate herbivorous humans and rebellious venus flytraps.
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