Tag Archives: Irish Bars

Cornwall’s: Rock Me Like Hurricane Earl

5 Sep

When it’s birthday time, nothing can stop us from partying.  Not rain, nor wind, nor a hurricane expected to bring both.   Friday night found us out in Kenmore, rain/drinking boots on, doing our part to combat Hurricane Early by drinking enough hurricanes to lower him to just a tropical storm.  And it worked!  Celebratory nachos seemed to be in order, so we took a break from darts and charades at Cornwall’s to try out the ‘chos.

We’ve unofficially reviewed the nachos at Cornwall’s before and found them….less than satisfactory.  But if so, then time to put it on the books!  Without consulting their menu, we alerted our waitress to our desperate need for the house nachos (they don’t normally come with chili so we went without).

  • Appearance: (6) Certainly cheesy, with oozing white cheddar barely masking some tomatoes and serious jalapenos.  On the side in plastic cups, the holy trinity of nacho condiments: salsa, sour cream, and…..queso dip? Huh??
  • Quality of Ingredients: (5) The melted white cheddar was delicious on top.  The salsa and queso….not so much.  The cheese sauce was barely even warmed!  Had we wanted to pour it over it would have been nothing but a big glob.  Salsa was nothing distinctive, chips likewise.  The black pepper on top was inspired.  So simple, yet so delicious!
  • Distribution of Toppings: (5) There was a ton of cheese on top but nothing on the lower layers.  It suddenly becomes clear: the double-cheese is deliberate, knowing that we’ll get bored with the naked chips underneath and need something to dip them in.  Why not just skip the queso altogether and just divide the cheese into two layers? Efficiency, people!
  • Price: (4) Since we flagged down a waitress and hollered for nachos rather than seeing the menu first, we knew that a lot would depend on the price.  And…$9? Without chili or chicken or anything?  Talk about a shock!
  • Overall: 20/40.  We always forget that this place has food…and for good reason.  A great place to get your drink on but the nachos are a total waste of money.

Clery’s: Our Achy Breaky Heart

30 May

Clery'sNacho Patrol has, as of late, been disillusioned. Everywhere we turn, we are submerged in a sea of cheese sauce. Our arteries simply can’t take it anymore! One more plate of slimy, high fat, liquefied cheese and Nacho Patrol will be checking into the nearest hospital for multiple triple bypasses. Our noble quest for nacho perfection will be for naught, our mission forever lost in the annals of Internet history!

Cheese sauce on nachos seems primarily to be a staple of Boston’s so-called “Irish” pubs. We’re still not really sure what that means. Just because you have Guinness, Smithwicks, and Shepard’s pie does not make you Irish. Everyone has that. Our mother’s dog has that. We also aren’t particularly sure what possesses the “Irish” to smother their nachos in a gooey bath of queso. Clery’s in Back Bay used this tactic to dress their nachos, much to the dismay of our taste buds and our now-fatty livers. Here’s the details:

  • Appearance: (7.5) Nacho Patrol appreciates fresh tomatoes on our nachos. It adds a kick of color and a clean, healthy taste to what usually is a caloric minefield. The salsa, olives, and sour cream also did a lot to distract from the pale, cheesy mess soaking our nachos. Generally, an appetizing-looking arrangement of colors and textures, but certainly not helped by the queso.
  • Quality of ingredients: (6) Again, none of the nacho staples were particularly off (good tomatoes, salsa, olives, jalapenos, sour cream, etc). It was the cheese sauce that tainted what could have been a fine example of “Irish” nachos. Sure, it was probably tediously melted in-house, but that doesn’t change the fact that cheese sauce is, by its nature, too salty, too viscous, and simply too soupy to enjoy. As we grasp for a glass of water, the nachos leave us feeling like we might have just taken 5 years off of our lives. MGH should keep a room open for us.
  • Distribution: ( 7 ) As always, the goes-anywhere nature of cheese sauce makes for perfect distribution. We wish we could have reviewed the placement of the chili, but as it was forgotten and later added, we can’t comment on it’s distribution.
  • Price: (5) $10, which is apparently the standard of sub-par bar nachos in Boston. We expect more.
  • Overall: 25.5/40

It’s official. We hate Boston’s fake-Irish bars. We get it, Glynn Hospitality Group–you want to bank on that tough, hard-drinking, Colin Farrell vibe that tourists just love. Unfortunately, it’s just plain boring. If Nacho Patrol was in government, we’d set up new zoning laws that would only allow these crap shoots every other block, instead of every ten feet. We’d also create an ordinance that banned queso dip everywhere but Border Cafe.

All this ranting has given us chest pains. Someone call 911.