Finn MacCool’s – Norwood

IMG_5582Sometimes I really wish I was able to see into the future so I can stop myself before I waste time and calories. Today was one of those days.

Hubby and I had been tossing up a few places to go to. I saw an ad for Finn MacCools and it appealed to me because I thought, wow, here’s a pub with slightly different comfort food.
I searched for their menu and got excited! I was definitely going to order the Irish Stew!

But, I can’t get too ahead of myself…
So hubby relented and we went with my choice.
We arrived and noticed the staff were busy scurrying from kitchen to table. There were lots of people there, some dining and some having a drink watching MMA on the big screens.

Eventually we were told to pick a table anywhere and went to a fairly quiet spot. I normally like there to be a bit more atmosphere but this looked to be the most comfortable, available table so we sat.

As soon as we sat down, a lady from a nearby table was getting up and she just couldn’t sing the praises of the food enough!
It was definitely unsolicited but she told me she’d been coming for years and usually went for the roast vegetable side. Hmmmm. Maybe I should have gone with that.
She said apart from the food, she also loved the feel of the pub. It had an “English” feel. Not sure what the Irish would have thought of that.
At that stage though, all I could think was, Yes! Even if the staff looked busy and preoccupied and I wasn’t entirely happy with where we were sitting, I’d made a good choice!

A slightly frazzled waiter came and brought some warm dinner rolls to the table. We haven’t had complimentary bread with our meal for a while so that was nice.
We ordered some nachos – Crispy Corn chips, Mediterranean bean salsa, cheese, guacamole and sour cream – to start.
Hubby ordered a 300gm Scotch fillet. The menu particularly states “Known as one of the better eating primal cuts of beef the scotch fillet will exceed eating expectations – simply superb”
I ordered the Irish Stew as I figured seeing as we’re in an Irish Pub, I should go for something Irish. The Irish Lamb Stew is on the menu as slow roasted lamb forequarter in thyme and garlic broth, roasted carrots, cocktail potatoes, spiced braised bacon and cabbage.
Sounds delicious doesn’t it?

After we’d ordered it I saw it being brought to another table and hoped I’d misheard the waitress announce the dish because what I saw didn’t look like a stew at all…
While we were waiting, a waitress came, and tried to give us some schnitzels. We told her we hadn’t ordered that and she looked a bit annoyed, like it was our fault that she had gone to the wrong table.

Our Nacho’s came and they were ok. Definitely nothing wow about them. The corn chips were crispy, the salsa and guacamole were nice. Hubby thought there definitely weren’t enough and maybe there wasn’t. I don’t know… I could have done without the bits of corn in the salsa though but it was ok.

Then the mains came… and there was no coming back from this disappointment.

I noticed right away that hubby’s steak looked burnt. I had asked for it medium rare when I ordered it. This wasn’t even medium this was well and truly well done.
He cut into it thinking maybe it was dark on the outside but pink in the middle but no, it was grey. Not even a hint of pink. What a travesty to a good cut of meat. He said it just tasted like burnt meat.
I guess we could have complained but it’s not as if someone came to our table to ask us how our meals were going.

Seeing as there had already been a mix up with food, I wondered if someone else had ordered that steak well done and we got that order instead of the medium rare that someone else was probably enjoying now.

I cried inside.

Hubby’s meat came with fries and salad. He thought there was no dressing on the salad but I had a taste and there was a little amount of dressing. At least he enjoyed the fries.


Now to my Irish Stew. An Irish Stew in an Irish Pub. You’d think you can’t go wrong right?
I looked at it then had to look at the menu again. Didn’t it say there was roasted carrots, cocktail potatoes in there? Where are they? Did they run away? The meat was chewy and not very pleasant to eat and the broth was, I don’t know… just lack lustre. It really really missed the vegetables.
Hubby looked and said “Did you get gravy broth with meat?”

I was sad. I had wanted to get something authentic instead I got nothing.
I could have done without the bits of bacon in there as well which just made it taste a little strange but luckily there were only a few tiny, tiny little pieces.

We just felt really ripped off. I try to include something positive in all my reviews and really I’m struggling with this one.
All I could think was I wanted my money and calories back!

Hubby and I ended up walking down the parade and stopping for dessert at a bakery, which helped a little…

My recommendation? Go to Finn MacCool’s if you’re going out for drinks with your mates but for a meal? I’d go elsewhere.

Have you been to Finn MacCool’s?
What was your experience like? I’d love to hear it.
Let me know in the comments below.

Till next we chow…


9 thoughts on “Finn MacCool’s – Norwood

  1. How disappointing! That lamb stew description had my mouth watering but what you showed looked more like a can of Dinty Moore beef stew. The steak looked good, but I would imagine it was quite dry.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Interestingly I was in the parade on Thursday 12th and had a nice coffee and cake in a little cafe in Norwood Mall. The particular cake I chose was, tart shell, caramel, banana whipped cream topped with chocolate flakes. I remember The Parade from years ago and it’s not the same, but I suppose nothing is today. Sorry about your less than enjoyable meal. I would have thought – Irish Pub – Irish Stew – no contest. ( Perhaps it was English after all!) :o)

    Liked by 1 person

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