Posted by: wrmcnutt | April 22, 2009

Restaurant Review – Limerick Junction, Atlanta Georgia

As I’ve mentioned before (and will mention again), when I’m traveling, I like to take my ease in the American version of an Irish Pub.  These pubs vary in quality and authenticity, and it’s my hope that my little efforts here will help guide you to the better pubs, and cause the lame ones to either improve, or whither and DIE!


Then again, maybe a bad pub is better than no pub.

Today’s offering, Limerick Junction, in the Virginia-Highlands area of Atlanta Georgia, falls in the middle of the road as pub experiences go.  Like many Irish-American pubs, Limerick Junction starts off by putting up a pretty good front.  The walls are green, the floor is wooden, and the booths and tables are wooden.  There are a sufficient number of 19th century Guiness ads on the walls and Irish flags hanging from the ceiling to have put in a good-faith effort. 

The menu, as well, has the same good-faith effort attached.  Fish and Chips, Irish Stew, Bangers and Mash, and the Ploughman’s platter are all available.  The Shepard’s Pie is a speciality, the local varient being  “Drunken Shepard’s Pie.”  Gravy made from Smithwick’s beer is the magic ingredient that makes it a “drunken’ shepard’s pie.  And it’s quite good.  It has a tangy, rollicking flavor that can fend for itelf if you like a full-bodied beer like a porter with your dinner.   I don’t think I’ll ever get used to the idea of cheese on my shepard’s pie, though.  I prefer it without cheese on it, and I keep forgetting to ask them toleave it off.  I kep meaning to branch out on their menu, but each time the call of Shepard’s Pie keeps me home on the farm, despite my adventurous palete. 

The bar, alas, is another story.  While they have a broad selection of Irish-themed shooters, the selection of Irish whiskey’s is slender.  And the selection of single malts is even smaller.  But supply is adequate for a man not to die of the t’irst.  As long as you can get the attention of the staff.  Mind you, the wait staff are competent, friendly, and quick, but Limerick Junction simply doesn’t have enough wait staff on the floor to meet the needs of a thirsty public.

UPDATE: 5:37 PM –

The atmosphere is also marginal.  For starters, Limerick Junction is a smoking venue.  So your clothes, hair, and food will all have the dreaded stink of cigarettes by the time the evening’s over.  Further, the Virgina-Highlands area mixes all the worst aspects of campus living and gentrified urban living.  The clientele tend to be a mix of yuppies and upper-income college students, and they are far more interested in each other, rather than the entertainment.  So it’s not a very pleasant performance venue for anyone trying to follow in the footsteps of the Irish bards.    The last time I was there, there was a brilliantly talented young man on the stage accompanying himself on guitar, harmonica, and some kind of high-tech gizmo that recorded him singing, and allowed him to harmonize with himself.  He did an utterly heroic job, but if he’d been assaulting a castle, it would have been uphill, and into an arrow storm.  I’ve seen dinner theater in Miami, and I”ve seen cheap buffets in Vegas, and Limerick Junction that night was the least respectful, least attentive crowd I’ve ever, ever seen.  I tipped him in cash. UPDATE: The really frustrating thing about it was that Limerick Junction is sandwiched between TWO pickup bars.  If they weren’t interested in the music, why were they there and not next door?

So – to sum up:  Limerick Junction gets

Two and a half pints of five for cuisine

Two pints of five for atmosphere.

One and a half pints of five for service – but it’s not the staff, it’s the managment not hiring enough help

That gives Limerick Junction a score of 2 pints of five overall.  It’s not my favorite place, and I will continue to search out Irish music in Atlanta.  But often Limerick Junction is my only option for tonight, so I will likely be returning.

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  1. I will point out that if you know WHEN to go, it can be quite nice there.

    but I agree, if you go on the wrong night the crowd can often be a bit much. Try next time to plan a trip with Christopher Ricker is singing on a weeknight. like a Wednesday or Thursday. No meat market crowd those night…usually.

  2. Limerick junction is one of the best place for enjoying and they are providing lot-of food items and fast food in reliable price. This is good review for good information for the restaurant.

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