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Best of Olympia 2019: O'Blarney's Irish Pub

Readers' Pick: Best Lunch, Best Meeting Place, and Best Sports Bar

The Blue Manchu highlights O’Blarney’s burger choices. (Credit: Dutch Randall)

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The readers have spoken! And O'Blarney's Irish Pub on Martin Way is a triple threat. Not only has it been selected as the Best Lunch Spot for it's great food, but also as the Best Sports Bar and Meeting Place.

As you enter, you'll find a family dining area to the right and a larger bar area around the corner to the left. The first thing you are likely to notice are the 13 large, HD-TV screens scattered throughout the place. Each screen seems to be showing a different sporting event ranging from soccer to rugby to basketball, and even some out-of-season football highlights for those of us still not willing to come to terms with the end of the season. And with that many TVs, there isn't a bad seat in the house.

The menu features a variety of typical burgers, appetizers and other pub favorites, but there are also plenty of options that are unique to O'Blarney's. Appetizers such as the Reuben Rolls, which are a creative fusion of the traditional Rueben sandwich in an eggroll, or the Irish Tater Skins that incorporate the traditional sour cream, cheese and bacon but add fresh tomatoes and olives. But the real gem here are the Beer Buddies. These beer-battered tater tots are stuffed with cheddar cheese and deep-fried to a crispy exterior with a hot cheesy interior and a side of Ranch for dipping.

One look at the list of burgers and you'll be hard-pressed to look at the rest of the menu. Though The Outrageous Blarney with its two quarter-pound patties, bacon, cheese, ham and a fried egg may be the first burger to catch your eye if you are really hungry, there are several other creative options worth a look as well. The bacon, mushroom, Swiss dip eats a lot like a patty melt dip, but the inclusion of sautéed mushrooms gives a little something extra that sets it apart. Finally, The Blue Manchu, even in its simplicity, is a burger above all others. A basic bacon burger with fresh red onions and lettuce is driven by a healthy helping of blue cheese crumbles.

Creative pub fare, 22 rotating taps to ensure even the pickiest beer drinker leaves satisfied, combines with a wide-open seating plan that is surprisingly quiet for all that is going on here, and it's easy to see why O'Blarney's Irish Pub is deserving of so many accolades.

O'BLARNEY'S IRISH PUB, 7 a.m. to 2 a.m., daily, 4411 Martin Way, Olympia, 360.459.8084,

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