Walking into the Lucky Clover in Brickell is a little like visiting an
Ireland section of Disney's Epcot. It's an Irish pub on steroids. Old signs for beer, spirits, and cheese hang on green wooden walls that look well-worn by decades of use. Stools
festooned with the bar's name in gold beckon you to sit and have a pint,
and young ladies in teeny-tiny kilts take your drink order.
Clover Irish Pub, which opened last night, is in fact a lot like Disney.
Designed by Retromania, a Spanish firm that specializes in creating
exact replicas of authentic European ale houses, the giant pub is filled
with vintage ads, reclaimed signage, family crests, and leather club
chairs. Look closer and you'll see large flat-screen TV sets and state-of-the-art lighting and sound systems on the stage -- you're still in Miami circa 2012.
Executive chef Pedro Galliardo and chef de cuisine Glenn Benito have created a menu that encompasses both traditional Irish pub fare and American bar favorites in the gigantic kitchen that is shared by Mare Nostrum, a Mediterranean-themed eatery set to open next week.
Guests can order favorites such as Lucky fish 'n' chips ($14.99) -- hand-battered cod with fries -- or spaghetti Bolognese, featuring pasta made fresh daily. Small plates include Clover wings with Guinness barbecue sauce ($11.99); Lucky sliders ($13.99), composed of Angus beef, caramelized onions, and Brie; and chicken quesadillas ($9.99).
An Irish pub wouldn't be complete without a good pint, so choose from ten drafts, including Guinness or 42 bottled beers. If you can't make up your mind, the Lucky Clover features three beer flights ($10 to $14) and three shot flights ($28).
The décor is classic Irish pub style with modern touches, such as state-of-the art sound and lighting systems. Live local bands will be featured Wednesday through Saturday evenings on the oversize stage (under the large screen).
Vintage signs adorn the Lucky Clover's walls.
The large modern kitchen is shared by new restaurant Mare Nostrum.
Yes, that freezer reads -57 degrees. It's specially designed to house tuna that will be shipped in from Europe. The tuna is flash-frozen on the ships and stored in this freezer.
Chefs Galliardo and Benito in the kitchen. Galliardo is in from Spain for the opening of the restaurants. Benito has moved from Spain to oversee the day-to-day kitchen operations.
Angus beef sliders with caramelized onions and Brie ($13.99).
Chicken quesadillas ($9.99).
Claudia and Roxy are two of the lovely kilt-wearing servers at the Lucky Clover.
Irish car bomb (Part 1).
Irish car bomb (Part 2).
Lucky #7 two ways. The signature drink is a mix of Pinnacle vodka, blue curaçao, lemonade, and a splash of orange juice ($10 rocks, $12 straight up).
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