Ah the British Isles. From Scotland to Britain to Ireland, the mystical islands across the pond have mesmerized most of us and captured a few of us Americans for good. It’s the joyful banter of a good discussion over a pint or the smell of the salt water crashing against our faces.
Here in Minnesota, just a mile down from the Mississippi we have a similar haven to have these joys. That’s Merlin’s Rest on East Lake Street.
It’s a pub. It’s got Irish and English signage along the walls, a wooden stage in the corner just big enough for a duet, wooden walls and a comforting bar. It’s got some windows, but it’s a bit on the darker side, embracing you like your favorite blanket or a hug from your slightly larger uncle, we slide right into a place like this and order a Guinness.
Merlin’s keeps up with tradition. There is a single malt tasting every first Thursday of the month but you could stop in any day really, as they have one of the best whisky stocks in all of Minneapolis.
Their food is also award winning. Take their Fish & Chips, which was voted best in the Twin Cities. Or you could go with our personal favorite, the Steak & Stilton. It’s a handmade pie with beef braised in a nice London porter and Stilton cheese. Baked until golden, you get a nice side of gravy to go with it.
Tradition in entertainment is as consistent as the food. On the fourth Monday of every month you can participate in pub singing, which we find to be rather enjoyable. Or you can pop in every Friday around 8:30 to hear a jam session of the Celtic variety.
What we’re saying is, there’s a lot to enjoy here and if this isn’t your sort of thing, we’ll say an Irish prayer for ya.