Pubs west of the Atlantic often pay homage to the UK, but Dan McGuinness Pub goes one step farther: it was actually made in Ireland. Shipped to Memphis, Tennessee in pieces, the first Dan McGuinness was entirely assembled by a team of five Irishmen, who still manually hold it together today. The franchise's other locations weren't built this way, but they all carry on the original pub's tradition of friendly service and classic Irish dishes such as corned beef and cabbage, bangers and mash, and shepherd's pie. American and English influences also permeate the menu in dishes such as blackened chicken fingers and fish ‘n’ chips made with Atlantic cod dipped in Harp lager batter.
The pub's beer list similarly mixes up European and American offerings with brews from Guinness, Smithwick's, and Sam Adams. Feasts at Dan McGuinness unfold amid a convivial atmosphere, with entertainment such as billiards and live music every Friday and Saturday night.
Chewing and chatting slow to a halt, and every set of eyes looks to the flat-screen TVs around the pub. A silent tension floats over the room as both the shot and game clock ticks toward the final seconds. As the ball swishes through the hoop in tandem with the timer’s final knell, the room explodes in a symphony of hoots and cheers that continues into the early hours of the morning. This scene plays out almost nightly during O'Connell's Irish Pub & Grille's regular game-watching parties.
Since throwing open their doors in 1968, O'Connell's staffers have worked hard to foster a welcoming, friendly environment where the community can get together, unwind, and debate the newest methods of chewing. Though the pub relocated from across OU's campus to its new location, the pub continues to build camaraderie on its foundations of relaxed revelry and hearty fare. Chefs bustle to create pub fare ranging from traditional fish 'n' chips to burgers crowned with toppings such as pineapples, fresh blue-cheese spread, and newly sizzled bacon bits. A lineup of lively events keeps patrons in the partying way throughout the year, especially during the annual St. Pat’s Party replete with live DJs, green eggs, and karaoke.
The buttery leather couch beneath the bookshelf has been taken over by a pair of readers enthralled in the world of their novels, oblivious to the raucous games of foosball and darts unfolding next to them. The setting of this laid-back scene isn't a domestic rec room but the upstairs smoking lounge and bar of Tapwerks. Dedicated to making patrons feel at home, Tapwerks' English pub–inspired decor, friendly staff, and weekly lineup of high-energy events foster a welcoming environment.
Amid the nonsmoking, flag-laden dining room on the first floor, eaters of all ages snuggle into wooden booths or around tables as they chow down on dishes of hearty bar staples such as fish 'n' chips, pizza, and burgers. Behind the careworn wooden bar, seasoned bartenders can fill up glasses with the sudsy contents of 212 taps or slide one of 100 bottled beers down the bar to a waiting hand. As days melt into evenings, Tapwerks’ cozy surroundings reverberate with the strums of live guitars during regularly scheduled Acoustic Nights or the ticking sound of brains working during trivia nights.
More than 30 years in the business of providing lip-smacking hospitality has taught the proprietors of The Library how to keep its customers coming back. A slew of regulars populates the eatery's bar-side chairs and group-size banquettes nightly, often chomping through head chef Justin McNutt's generous burgers, meaty sandwiches, and buffalo wings—each named after an infamous author or literary masterpiece. Besides hosting special events within its dining chamber, The Library also invites guests to live it up during private parties with custom menus and flowing libations within its indoor courtyard.
Per its name, Teapioca Lounge serves teas studded with tapioca balls?but its brews extend beyond that. The team also fills tapered glasses with peach black tea, grapefruit green tea, and creamy teas in flavors such as cantaloupe, peppermint, and pudding. They round out their selection with some non-tea items, too, from coffee to cheesecakes topped with fresh fruit.
Red Mango's frozen yogurt has been garnering national attention for more than five years, unlike that musician strumming away next to the foosball table in his basement. The shop earned a place atop Zagat's 2011 lists for Best Smoothie and Frozen Yogurt Chain and Best Healthy Options Among Quick Refreshment Chains. Red Mango showcases its award-winning reputation by dishing up all-natural and gluten-free yogurts?all of which are either low-fat or nonfat?that promote healthy digestive and immune systems with natural probiotics. Friendly staff members are always on hand to whip more than 40 flavors of frozen yogurt into Stevia-sweetened smoothies or parfaits layered with organic granola and fruit, and dish out coffee and oatmeal for breakfast or mid-day pick-me-up.. The toppings bar brims with crunchy cereal, cheesecake bits, and nuts, allowing creative customization.