Irish-themed restaurants always seem to have an odd balance they need to strike. Outside of some green paint, plenty of drink options and some “Irish” food, there are a bevy of directions a restaurant can go. With that in mind, your intrepid restaurant reviewer checked out Shamrock’s Ale House in Temple Terrace off Temple Terrace Highway with my roommate and his girlfriend.
Shamrock’s website boasts they are the “Sports mecca of Temple Terrace.” They are not wrong. With TVs strewn along every wall as well as an outdoor bar with TVs, Shamrock’s has a clear focus on catering to sports fans. Sitting in a booth, we viewed the Rays game, an NHL playoff game and other random MLB games. Placement of TVs was decent, though the Rays game was kind of just mixed in with the rest as opposed to being a featured game.
We were seated right away and had our server right away – always a nice touch. Shamrock’s boasts 2-for-1 happy hour all day, every day. (Doesn’t that defeat the purpose of happy hour?) I tried the “Shamrock’s Red Ale,” a standard red ale. At $5.60, at happy hour, it’s a good deal.
The rest of the menu was a hodgepodge of sports bar food, Irish food and other fare. I went for the “Irish Nachos” and their meatball sub. My roommate got the fish ’n’ chips and his girlfriend got honey and garlic wings.
The fish ’n’ chips looked to be the winner of the bunch. The outside was nice and crispy and the inside was moist and flavorful. My roommate said it was one of the better he has had. His girlfriend’s order of wings consisted of some of the bigger wings I’ve ever seen. Her only complaint was that the sauce could have used a little more honey.
Overall, Shamrock’s seems to have pretty good prices and some good options on the busy menu. The two-for-one drinks, if you are into that, and their portion sizes — chances are you will take some home — make for what is ultimately a sports bar I could see myself going back to.