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Let's eat.

From Big Sur's killer cliff-clinging eateries to Salinas' unparalleled produce, this blog aims to sniff out all things Monterey County can stomach, via picture and prose, curiosity and appetite, hand and mouth.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

After Midnight Action in Carmel (?!)

Typically the words "2am" and "Carmel" only appear in the same sentence in the police blotter—along with "raccoon"—so I get it if the next sentence blows a motherboard or two in the vicinity of Sleepy-by-the-Sea.

Flanagan’s Irish-American Pub (625-5500) has been holding it down until 2am tomorrow quite often. New owner Joe Opitz (below) estimates half of his first month has seen folks holding up the bar until the wee hours. Then there's this: "Although the kitchen closes at 10pm," he says, "we do have a late night menu that changes on a whim. If I can make it... I will, and the fryers always on."

I stopped by on a summer Wednesday and the place was full. Opitz and his wife/co-owner Luciana are loving having their own place after helping fly the Pelican Tavern in the American Tin Cannery (now Woody's Bayside Grill) and giving the Fuse Lounge life across the parking lot in the Carmel Mission Inn.

(Opitz says his work with the Mission Inn helped solidify his pitch with the Barnyard landlords, who he says have been very supportive; the Mission Inn, meanwhile, sends late arriving guests over if they need some sustenance after hours.)

Irish-American Opitz seems most proud of bringing the area its first Irish pub—"My mother is a Blair and a Fitzpatrick and I was named after my great-grand daddy, Joseph Fitzpatrick; the pub, however, is named in honor of my favorite watering hole in Liverpool, Flanagan's Apple"—and the double-fried fresh cut fries, which were outstanding at Pelican. In two weeks or so Opitz will be using peanut oil instead vegetable oil, which will make them even better.

The pool table is a huge addition for the Barnyard and the city. I think you have to migrate to Monterey to get the next closest game.

He and Brazilian-born Luciana are crazy for soccer so the joint had a World Cup theme going at the time.

They're open 11:30am-2am (or a touch earlier if crowds die out) daily.

Here's a look at the menu, which reads, "Welcome to Flanagan’s. We are opening with a limited edition menu as we acclimate to our new surroundings. We’d love to hear your feedback and we’ll be adding new items in the coming months. Please visit again and watch us grow!"

(I tried the crab balls, which were on par with the hardcore Maryland standards he had for his lump meat cakes at Pelican. Pitchers of Newcastle to accompany the pool game were a respectable $16. They currently have eight drafts on tap.)


Lil’ Crab Balls $8
Baltimore style wee-size crab cakes are made with Phillips crabmeat, served with tartar sauce and crackers.

Chips-Fresh Cut $4
A basket of our fresh cut chips (that’s fries for the Yanks), these babies are something to behold! Cooked in the traditional method, our desire for perfection is evident.

Buffalo Wings $7
True to their origins, these big wings flew here by way of Buffalo. Served with Blue Cheese and celery of course.

Mozzarella Sticks $6
A pub favorite, served with marinara sauce.

Chicken Tenders $7
All breast white meat breaded and served with ranch or honey mustard.

All Hail Caesar $6
Local Romaine is cut and served with house made croutons, freshly grated parmesan, and our own Caesar dressing.

Mixed Baby Greens $6
Salinas Valley’s finest blend with chopped onions, cherry tomatoes and the dressing of your choice.

The Green Monster $9
Fresh Salinas Valley spinach served with bleu cheese crumbles, diced bacon, toasted sunflower seeds, cherry tomatoes, and chopped onion, with a classic or raspberry vinaigrette.

Sandwiches- all sandwiches come with our fresh-cut chips

The Banger $6
Authentic UK style sausage served on a lightly toasted bun with all the fixins.

Flanagan’s Burger $9
½ lb. of fresh Angus beef is just the beginning. Comes with L.T.O. on the side. You can add cheese, bacon, or mushrooms. It’s your burger…

Reuben $9
This sandwich is packed with pastrami, swiss cheese, sauerkraut, and 1000 Island dressing served on marbled rye.

All Beef ½ lb. Dog $7
Saag’s all beef hot dog is a nine incher on a lightly toasted bun. Yeah, we like’em big….Comes with the fixings.

Cali O’Club $9
This triple decker California Club is decked out with smoked turkey, bacon, tomato, lettuce, onion, mayo, and avocado. Served on toasted wheat.

Flanagan’s Fish n Chips $14
Slabs of cod deep fried in beer batter, served with our fresh cut chips.

Bangers and Mash $13
Fresh made Bangers, mashed potatoes, and our delicious gravy.

Sanddabs $15
Locals know’em (and love’em). If you’re not from these parts, it is a flat fish along the likes of a small flounder. They are tasty when lightly dredged in flour and pan-sautéed. Served with a light white sauce.

The Ribeye $19
12 ozs of pure flavor, this steak just sizzles. Cooked the way you want it, it is our pleasure to present this hand-cut Angus steak.