I had occasion to go to Patrick’s this Friday for lunch. Since they are only in a “soft opening” (their words) phase I’m not going to do a review at this point. It’s pretty clear to me that they are still a work in progress. Rather I’l just share some of my first impressions: It is in the space formerly occupied by Venuti’s, but they have changed things around. The first thing you notice as is the bar. It is approximately 45 feet long, dark carved wood- very impressive and looked like it had seen some action. The owner told me the story of how his brother found it in Ireland in a building slated for remodelling and how he sent a woodworker from Hagerstown over to disassemble it and ship it to Frederick. They appear to have about 10 beverages on draft including: Guinness, Smithwick’s, Newcastle Brown, Flying Dog Pale Ale and a hard cider who’s name escapes me. I can say without reservation that the Smithwicks and Guinness are good! Since it was lunch and I had to function that afternoon I’ll have to report back to you on the others.
They had a limited menu consisting of a single page that can be summed up in one word “eclectic.” There was fare you expected to see: Shepherd’s Pie, fish and chips and corned beef and cabbage. There was also some wild stuff: Cod with Thai lime sauce, seared Ahi tuna, samosas and baked brie. Not your typical pub fare. Everything I sampled seemed rather pedestrian and there was nothing that grabbed me.
A few other odds and ends: the bathrooms have been completely remodelled and are now bright and clean as opposed to the dank hole that was Venutis bathroom. This may not come as a surprise to those who visited Venutis near the end of its life, but the new owner said they spent a lot of time and money ridding the kitchen of “an infestation” of insects left over from the previous occupants. I look forward to visiting after their “Grand Opening” which is supposed to be some time in November.