What’s an Italian guy who once had a couple of pizzeria/pasta houses doing helping an Irish pub get started?
Frank Eucalitto has the quick answer: “I’m part Irish – my grandmother was a McCarthy.”
Eucalitto, long-time restaurant owner (Cafe Chardonnay and the former No Anchovies!) is helping Cleve Mash and a group of investors, including the John Flynn family, transform the former Bobbi Sue BBQ in downtown West Palm Beach into an Irish pub.
“It just wasn’t the right concept for downtown crowd,” Eucalitto said of the barbecue spot. “It’s family-oriented food, really, and Clematis Street is not as family friendly. It’s more of a pub and bar food crowd.”
The Flynns are from Ireland, but have been visitors to West Palm Beach for nearly 30 years, Eucalitto said. “They know the area and think this is a good fit.”
The restaurateur will create the menu that the chef will follow. “They’re my recipes, for some typical Irish fare but with a twist. We’re going to tweak it a little bit toward a gastro pub. I’ll be able to do a bunch of casual foods that are interesting items that I’ve wanted to do at Cafe Chardonnay – more like what I did at No Anchovies!
“The food will be good quality focusing on local farms – we’re using Kai Kai farm in Jupiter for greens and getting local fish and Cape Canaveral shrimp.”
It won’t be a large menu, he said, but specials will allow the chef room for creativity. “It’s going to be a fun menu with great beers.”
Eight beers will be on tap – Guinness and Harp, of course, and six microbrews. 40 craft brews in bottles and 35 wines, half by the glass, will be offered.
Mash, whose successes include Dirty Martini and Dr. Feelgood’s, will manage the front of the house and entertainment. Live bands will perform on weekends, and will include Irish bands.
Authentic Irish pub decor
“They want this authentic look and they did a great job with the interior,” Eucalitto said. Cubbies and snugs, typical seating in village pubs that dot the Irish countryside, are part of the authenticity. “It’s going to look like it’s been on Clematis forever.”
Modern touches are included. “They’ll have eight TV’s – but it’s not a sports-bar look. They fit right in with the decor.” International soccer and rugby games will be shown live, so breakfast on weekends, and late-late-night fare is planned along with lunch and dinner daily.
There’s room for it on the street despite others, he said. “It’s going to be a great place to just hang out and have good food and a beer and meet up with friends.”
J. Flynn’s is at 223 Clematis Street, West Palm Beach. It’s expected to open the week of November 11 for lunch and dinner. Website: Jflynnpub.com