Good morning! To anyone who celebrated St. Paddy’s Day with a vengeance, I wish you a speedy recovery today (though we all know that’s unlikely). Jillian, Heather, and I honoured St. Patrick yesterday at O’Hare’s Pub in Richmond, though we managed to keep the pints (and therefore headaches) to a minimum!
We first enjoyed a relaxing morning at The River Rock, day 2 of my pre-birthday staycation. I’ve now had the pleasure of dining in both Tramonto and the River Rock Buffet, and slumbering like a queen in one of their rooms. We had a beautiful view of the river, which was extra nice because……
…….when we woke up in the morning, we were treated to….SUN! I nearly cried at the sight of it. If The River Rock arranged that too, I salute them.
It was packed when we arrived, but we still managed to get a table near the window, in the ‘library’ like section of the pub. The pub is classically Irish, with a variety of food on the menu and specials on yesterday just for St. Patrick.
In tribute to the day, we ordered 3 pints of Guinness, but the pub also has an ever-growing craft beer list that would also be worth stopping in for.
For lunch, we split a steak and mushroom pie, and asked for a side of soda bread, which they were serving with their stew. I absolutely adore Irish soda bread, and crave it especially when I’m drinking beer. One of my fondest memories of Ireland is spending the night in a small town pub and being fed basket after basket of soda bread by the bartender. I just couldn’t get enough of it.
So here’s some very good news – the steak and mushroom pie ($13.99) was one of the best I’ve ever had. Not just in Richmond, but anywhere.
The chef at O’Hare’s knows how to cook, and knows how to season food. That might seem like an obvious skill, but it’s not often present, especially in pubs. The pie was served in a round casserole dish and sealed with a large cap of golden pastry, with phenomenal gravy that was rich, savoury, and packed with flavour without being too salty.
The chunks of steak were perfectly tender, with pastry that was buttery and flaky. This St. Paddy’s pot pie was pretty much perfection. Pleasing, pleasant, and positively plumb pretty!
It was served with crispy fries and a scoop of mushy peas, another side dish so rarely seasoned well.
These were actually tasty! Once all the pastry was consumed, we began dipping our fries in the gravy, a combination so excellent we were tempted to order the poutine.
The soda bread with butter was great; we had it with a small bowl of Irish stew that Erinn brought for us to taste. Again, it was beautifully done, with big chunks of fork-tender lamb, potatoes, carrots, and a not too thick but hearty gravy.
For dessert, we had a slice of their Jameson bread pudding, which came with spiked crème anglaise and a tall swirl of whipped cream.
It was soft, eggy, and barely sweet – just the right dessert for those who’ve been consuming stout and don’t want too much sugar.
At 1pm, the whole pub was treated to a performance by some local Irish dancers, who were sweet as can be and VERY good.
They came around with a hat afterwards for donations, and I snapped a picture of these two darlings.
I highly recommend O’Hare’s Pub, and hope I soon have an excuse to go back. In case anyone’s post-Paddy’s headache extends until next weekend, here’s what to do: head to O’Hare’s for their Saturday or Sunday brunch, and order the Hangover breakfast: poutine topped with BBQ pulled pork, two poached eggs and hollandaise. Yup, you read that right.
Thanks again to the River Rock Casino and Resort for our lovely staycation, and to all the fine folks at O’Hare’s Pub for a cozy afternoon spent celebrating St. Patrick!
Cash and cards accepted
Vegetarian options available