Not content to conquer only the realm of family-style breakfast eats, Family Pancake House owner Robert Mathwig decided to try his hand at creating a classic sports bar with delicious eats and a variety of drinks. To that end, he helped his chefs assemble a menu of bar fare gussied up with fine ingredients, from asiago, parmesan, and romano mac 'n' cheese to beer-battered Alaskan cod served with chips.
The standard-with-a-twist dishes arrive at tables awash in the electronic glow of 15 flat-screen TVs and a jumbo projector screen broadcasting stimulating sports action or congressional-subcommittee meetings. Contests of skill play out on two pool tables, and outdoors, a patio with heated seating fends off Jack Frost's touch.
Located near the Bremerton Ferry Terminal, Bremerton Bar & Grill serves up fresh American cuisine for breakfast on Saturday and Sunday, as well as lunch and dinner all week in a casual and family-friendly atmosphere. The menu includes entrees hot off the grill, including burgers and steaks as well as 18 draft beers, wine, and specialty cocktails. If the weather?s nice, diners can relax on the outdoor patio and heckle slow-moving seagulls.
At Bison Creek Pizza & Pub, the past meets the present in both food and d?cor. Located inside the historic Burien Theatre, the pizzeria serves its gourmet pies from a modern kitchen, but it pours mixed drinks from the theater's original saloon-like bar. A stage has replaced the screen, and free live shows blare music across the expansive room regularly. Bison Creek's menu exemplifies the same juxtaposition of tradition and change, boasting specialty pizzas that it's served since opening in 1975, now with modern twists such as gluten-free crusts, soy cheese, and invisible slices.
Customers can build their own pizza, but the pub is known for its gourmet options such as the 6th Gear?a pizza piled high with chicken, bacon, and artichoke hearts simmering garlic cream sauce with onions and garlic. The menu has expanded as well. Grinder sandwiches filled with tender pulled pork or heaps of salami, bacon, and pepperoni come with a pile of fries, and the kitchen produces pasta dinners with homemade sauces such marinara, alfredo, or pesto cream.
Mick Kelly’s Irish Pub boasts a full menu of eclectic pub fare for lunch and dinner daily. Appetizers range from the elegance of steamed local clams ($8.99 for a half pound, $14.99 for a pound) in a white-wine, garlic, and butter sauce to the potato decadence of seasoned fries ($4.99) baked under a blanket of cheddar cheese and topped with sour cream and green onions. Empty-handed post-auction attendees can make a taste-bud bid on the hearty selection of handheld sandwiches, such as the french dip with a rosemary-shallot au jus ($9.99), whereas the eatery’s Irish specialties promise to make eyes, noses, and mouths smile. Summon a serving of the corned beef and cabbage ($9.99–$11.99) or the slow-cooked Guinness beef stew ($8.99–$10.99) to satisfy a Leopold Bloom–esque appetite, or indulge in the apple-brandy pork chops ($15.99) or spicy prawn penne ($14.99). For guests allergic to the moon, Mick Kelly’s Irish Pub serves up a bounty of brunch bites on Saturday and Sunday mornings from 8 a.m. to noon.
To Drink: Alongside local draught beers from Washington and Oregon brewers such as Odin’s Gift, tenders pour out spirit flights, including the Cooley Distillery Collection with Greenore 8 year, Connemara 12 year, and Tyroconnel single-malt Irish whiskey. In the mixology department, artisans whip up potions such as Liam's Libation: Jameson, banana, spiced syrup, lemon, and bitters.
When to Go: * Saturday and Sunday during brunch, when they serve up boxty, a pancake of potatoes and scallions popular in the north Midlands.
Where to Sit: Grab a sturdy wooden table near the towering stacked-stone fireplace, or belly up to the bar on a cherry-stained stool to admire the dozens of Irish whiskeys and scotches.
While You Wait
If You Can’t Make It, Try This:
If you don’t mind forgoing the food and hopping right into the revelry, head to Conor Byrne Pub (5140 Ballard Avenue NW), an Irish-style watering hole that marries exposed brick walls, chandeliers, and live music.
What to Drink: The bar’s 19 rotating taps feature beers from local favorites and microbrewers around the country. Bartenders also pour selections from an impressive collection of more than 30 scotches.
When to Go
Inside Tip: Barking Dog Alehouse takes its family-friendly vibe seriously, offering a special kids’ menu packed with chicken tenders, burgers, and miniature ice cream sundaes.