Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Irish Rover Too in today's LEO.

In today’s LEO, restaurant and food writer Marty Rosen reviews Irish Rover Too, the La Grange, Kentucky, branch of the long-established original Irish Rover on Frankfort Avenue.

No fears the second time around for Irish Rover Too

A strong case can be made that Marty, who in civilian life is the chief librarian at Indiana University Southeast, is the best pure writer among those ink-stained Louisvillians who tackle food and drink on a regular basis. He brings erudition to the table along with the meal and libations, and his prose is a joy to read.

Live a bit and you’ll come to realize that Irish pubs are akin to comfort food, but just because everyone’s grandmother could prepare meatloaf, it doesn’t mean that some recipes weren’t better than others.

Chain Irish pubs have begun to sprout across the landscape, and these are both reprehensible and generally populated by people who mistake Killian’s for beer. My advice in this instance, as with most other analogous situations in the pursuit of the perfect pint, is to avoid them.

The chains, and the people.

Outside of Ireland itself, I’ve been to Irish pubs throughout Europe, most of them operated by Irish expatriates, and all of them having at least Guinness in common, or else having no right to lay claim to comprehensible “Irishness.”

Last summer, while in the boondocks north of Atlanta for a family reunion, we discovered M'vorneen's in the unlikely locale of Cartersville, Georgia – and as with a previous experience long ago in Bucharest’s Dubliner, I learned yet again that a pint of stout goes a long way toward relieving a melancholy sense of unfamiliarity.

It is this unparalleled ability to relate to the inner desires of Anglophones that is the singular marketable commodity of Ireland. The Reidys always have done it well in Louisville, and I’m happy to see their La Grange experiment working out.

No comments: