Last night, three of us went to O’Reilly’s Irish Pub and Restaurant in North Beach. I am sad to say that I cannot recommend it to anyone.
We ordered Shepard’s Pie, “Stella Farmer’s Corned Beef & Cabbage” and the “Classic Chicken Pot Pie” and for starters, we ordered the cod and potato croquettes and three Harps. The beer arrived in a few minutes. The restaurant was nearly empty.
We then waited for 45 minutes before I inquired where our croquettes were and the waitress promptly went for the check and said that I did not order them. Eventually she had an epiphany and remembered us ordering them and said we would have them in a moment. The three small patties that looked more like ‘bubble and squeak’ than fried croquettes arrived about 15 minutes later. They had no flavor or pleasant texture. They were served with a spinach salad that was not memorable. Of course, five minutes after they arrived, our main courses arrived.
The corned beef was okay – I would go back for this dish because it was reasonably priced and tasted good. The Shepard’s Pie had a layer of mashed potatoes about 1.5 inches thick covering about a quarter of an inch of everything else and had never seen the inside an oven.
The Classic Chicken Pot Pie, which was described as “Tender pieces of chicken breast cooked with fresh vegetables in a creamy garlic and white wine sauce; then topped with puff pastry” also had never been in an oven. The puff pastry that topped this ‘pie’ was a pre-baked square about half the size of the baking dish that was placed atop and left swimming just before serving. The creamy garlic and white wine sauce was all cream – no flavor of garlic, wine or good stock. All of the pieces of chicken together did not equal two tablespoons in quantity.
I guess that they close early because as we were eating – we got there at 8:30pm – staff began clearing the tables, including the wilted flowers and candle on our table. We did feel a little rushed, but we just ignored the intrusion. When we were finished, we had to beg for the check.
The final straw was the check. The waitress ‘lowered’ the prices by a dollar on most of the items, but then added them to the tax – I am guessing to increase her tip! So the tax was about 11% of the bill.
We were so engaged in conversation and having fun that the bad food, bad and slow service, and the aparently high taxes did not ruin the evening. And it is not like I had high expectations. I have eaten at O’Reilly’s twice before and both times were good, but never great.
Sadly, I cannot recommend O’Reilly’s for food. It is a great place to drink, though.