The pub has long served as the epicenter of Ireland’s social life—a place where friendships are made and stories are shared over foamy pints of beer. Finn McCool's Irish Pub positions itself firmly within this tradition of communality, inviting guests to bond while eating fish ‘n’ chips or clinking glasses of Guinness at a hardwood bar that spans the length of the room.
The convivial atmosphere isn’t the only aspect of Finn McCool's that recalls the old country. Traditional Irish staples such as shepherd’s pie, corned beef, and bangers and mash fill the pub’s menu. Savory scents waft through the air as guests throw darts, play billiards, and soak in the sunshine on the outdoor patio. A lineup of flat-screen TVs hums with the sounds of the day’s sporting events, which guests can wager their pots of gold or leprechaun manservants on at the pub’s Colonial Downs betting hub. :m]]
Gold Coast Pizza’s cooks take a West Coast approach to their pies, piling toppings on thin, crispy crusts made from expertly aged dough. Modeled after Padington's Pizza in Oregon, this shop names its disks after Pacific people, places, and things, such as the three-meated Lewis and Clark, the Ventura Veggie, or the Mount Rainier, renowned for its 2011 culinary eruption of salami and mushrooms and its 1894 actual eruption of lava and mushrooms. The Crescent City sits under a house blend of cheeses and black olives, and Honolulu Gold shimmers under ham and pineapple bits. Alternatively, an all-you-can-eat pizza buffet during lunch hours allows patrons to enjoy as many slices as possible between business meetings. Gold Coast can seat up to 150 people and features a 62-person banquet room. Self-serve fountain sodas wash down each slice more deliciously than a mouth-bound tributary of the Willamette River.:m]]
Every day from 3 p.m. to 1:30 a.m. Eko Lounge Patio's genial personnel furnish patrons with quality cigars, tasty hookah, and a satiating menu of sandwiches and snacks. Tossed salads, fried fare, and assembled platters complement the aromatic smoke of stogies from such name brands as Padron, Rocky Patel, and Romeo y Julieta, whose scent inspires customers to communicate entirely in sonnets. Both an outdoor patio and an indoor lounge area host leisurely digestion and inhalation sessions, whereas a dance floor invites visitors to shake their groove things to the thumping tunes spun by DJs three nights a week. Eko Lounge Patio's weekly events include a salsa-dancing night, preceded by free lessons, and Tuesday-night karaoke sessions.
At first glance, Keagan's Irish Pub and Finn McCool's don't seem so different. Both are thoroughly Irish establishments, serving traditional dishes of shepherd's pie, bangers 'n' mash, and fish ’n’ chips in dining rooms adorned with dark woods and stonework accents. Both also feature regular karaoke nights and live-music acts that regale patrons with songs so catchy they're under investigation by the CDC. But Finn McCool's stands out from its sister restaurant in one important aspect—its seafood bar, replete with broiled oysters and clams, steamed shrimp and snow crab, and sautéed mussels that arrive to tables solo or in hefty combination platters.
Under the trained eyes of the chefs at BanZara Restaurant, tender pieces of lamb absorb the piquant spices in lamb khorma’s coconut gravy, while marinated chicken chunks cook over a charcoal griddle before being dunked into delicious sauce for a tikka dish. The culinary team also pulls from Indo-Chinese recipes, combining eggs with flavored chicken and cooking deep-fried dumplings with traditional Indo-Chinese spices. In addition to dinners, the chefs also craft a lunch buffet of new dishes every day of the week, which diners can sample while ensconced in the eatery’s leather booths or, if they ask very nicely, straight from the chef’s ladle.
Though it’s far from the border, Nuevo Mexico Restaurante serves up dishes of traditional Mexican cuisine. The staff rolls seasoned pork or chicken burritos, stuffs taquitos with beef, or grills spinach and tucks it into quesadillas. One of the benefits of their location on the East Coast is the ability to ship in real blue crab from Maryland, granting chefs fresh ingredients for crab salads and enchiladas. One location’s decor unites rich wood accents with exposed red brick, a mural of a matador dodging a bull, and a bar that has three sides, like any argument between a husband and his wife with a crime-fighting alter-ego.