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Finn McCool's (Formerly Molly Malone's, Formerly Finn McCool's Irish Publick House), Barracks Row - YAWN


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worst burger I've had in a long time...Finn MacCools, almost inedible...if I hadn't been starving and rushing to get to the DC United game it would have been inedible.

and speaking of inedible...their Irish nachos most simply put is a big pile of crap covered in melted crap.

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I'm still in search of a decent pre-game option on Barracks Row. For a very brief time The Ugly Mug was a perfectly fine place for mini burgers and other bar fare, but it dropped off of a cliff rapidly. Finn MacCool's is godawful. Just terrible. The only thing it has going for it is a decent beer selection and usually plenty of places to sit compared to the Mug. I go there when I've already eaten. Hopefully the new Matchbox will provide some relief. I actually like the greasy fare at Trusty's, but it will no longer be convenient for Nats games next year.

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I'm still in search of a decent pre-game option on Barracks Row. For a very brief time The Ugly Mug was a perfectly fine place for mini burgers and other bar fare, but it dropped off of a cliff rapidly. Finn MacCool's is godawful. Just terrible. The only thing it has going for it is a decent beer selection and usually plenty of places to sit compared to the Mug. I go there when I've already eaten. Hopefully the new Matchbox will provide some relief. I actually like the greasy fare at Trusty's, but it will no longer be convenient for Nats games next year.

I had a back'n'blue burger at Tunnicliff's a couple years ago when I was in town that wasn't the worst I ever had, perhaps that would be an on-the-way-to-RFK stop that, while it wouldn't wow you or Tweaked, might tide you over 'til the Matchbox arrives.

We were on vacation and in pleasant company, and we were drinking, not uncontrolledly, but purposefully, so I may misremember....DID have an excellent brunch at Belga that same trip, the excellence of which I am almost positive I recall correctly.

The Mug's minis were still good then, maybe it was actually 3 years ago....

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Honestly you either befriend someone who lives on the Hill and pre-game BBQ it at their house or you join one of the DC United supporter groups and tailgate in Lot 8.

To be fair to Finn's, the last time I had their fish and chips they made surprisingly good pub food, the beer selection is good, and the setting is nice...but their snacky/app selection sucks (the chicken wings are passable, although the sauce is a little weird and they are sometimes over cooked, but when on special the wings are a decent option)

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Pat said:
I hear that Finn macCool's is going to be bought by the same person who owns Lola's and that he plans a few months-long renovation to make better use of the space.

[ed. to fix clunky phrasing]

Molly Malone's will be reopening in this space within the next couple of weeks. They're hoping to make it before St. Pat's Day but aren't 100% sure they'll make it by then. Definitely look for them by the weekend after the 17th.

The theme is comfort food. I wish I'd taken notes from the menu recitation because all I remember is chicken pot pie, shepherd's pie, rosemary mashed potatoes, and country ham sandwich. The listing of menu items I heard was much longer and sounded fabulous.

Lola's is packed to capacity much of the time. They're apparently turning hundreds of people away every weekend, so having this two story place next door should work well. People who have seen the inside (just a 3 month renovation) say it's gorgeous.

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This also has a beautiful picnic table and benches out in front. I was talking to the owner and he said he plans to put cushions on them that snap/tie into place. I asked how long he thought they'd last and he seemed optimistic.

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I'm looking forward to this restaurant opening. It's right next to my office and now knowing that its owned by the same people as Lola's I'm very excited.

I eat lunch at Lola's at least twice a week and its the best addition to the neighborhood in a long time (at least in terms of lunch options. Matchbox isn't open for lunch right now). The food is some of the tastiest "bar food" I've had in DC, so hopefully they'll be doing something similar at Molly Malone's.

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cheezepowder said:
There used to be a Molly Malone's on Washington Blvd in Clarendon, but it's now O'Sullivan's. I never went inside.

That seems to be a common name for Irish-themed places, as is the name Finn macCool.

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Swung over to Molly Malone's Saturday afternoon for the DC United game. It is now the official bar for the Barra Brava supporters group.

They did a really nice job with the upstairs, opened up the entire space, skylights, lots of wood. etc. Downstairs is much the same just dressed up. So basically think of it as Finn MacCools with a facelift.

The beer list is nothing special, the usual array of mainstream imports, Guiness, Smithwicks, Harp, Carlsburg etc. along with a smattering of mainstream micros, Magic Hat, Dog Fish etc.

The menu is what you would expect from an American bar with an Irish name (fish&chips etc. etc.) with a smattering of "upscale bar food" (lobster quesadilla, sliders) plus soups, salads.

The buffalo wings were medicore at best (although they were slammed with several hundred DC Unted fans)

I'm sure they will do well on the Hill with the locals, the marines, and the pre/post sporting event crowd.

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What a gorgeous space, both upstairs and down. Xavier has an amazing sense of style and knows how to put together a bar/lounge/restaurant. There's something about being in such a well-designed space that is comforting in its own right.

The corned beef on my reuben was tender and pretty good, but the sandwich was meh overall. The fries were just okay (and not the skin on fries described on the menu. Maybe they ran out?) Service, as with Lolas, was friendly and just right.

Whenever I see a reuben on a menu, I always try it because it's my favorite sandwich. I'm rarely satisfied. I'll try some other items on the menu before I draw a conclusion here, especially knowing that I've liked the food turned out by the same chef's kitchen next door.

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This was my first visit to Molly Malone's (although I went to Lola's in June). It really is a nice-looking restaurant, and I can see why people are comfortable dining here.

It was happy hour (3-7 PM), so pints of thoughtfully poured Kilkenny Irish Ale were $5 instead of the usual $6 (note to otherwise genial bartender: Please do not wipe down the sides of my overflowing mug with a dishcloth after placing the beer in front of me - yuck!) :rolleyes:

Like Lola's, the menu reads beautifully, and whoever wrote it knows what they're doing. A Crab and Artichoke Dip ($10) was served with bagged tortilla chips (yellow, blue, red, and green), and was very much like a baked dish of whatever-you-call-the-filling-inside-of-crab-rangoons, topped with a little cheese. Primarily mayonnaise or some related dairy product, with just enough fibers so you know there's crab in it, this dip had no discernible artichoke that I could find. While primally satisfying (salt, fat, etc.), this appetizer shook my confidence enough so that I didn't go any deeper into the menu, and decided to move on to the next restaurant for dinner.

Cheers,

Rocks.

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