The newly opened Original Public House on South Memorial Parkway is Huntsville’s latest dining option. With an eclectic menu of traditional Irish fare infused with a Southern flair, diners are offered a variety of meal choices ranging from sandwiches ($10-12) to stews and of course fish & ships. Prices are reasonable and the menu tops out at a $20 steak. The interior of the building has been nicely redone and features a large central bar with dining areas off to the sides.
While The Original Public House may be the answer to Huntsville’s need for an Irish Pub, don’t shy away from it as a family dining option. Booster seats and highchairs are available, and the kids’ menu has several options for the little ones, all for just $5 including a soft drink and cookie. My boys ordered a burger and fish & chips and both gave a thumbs up.
When you go, plan to splurge on an appetizer because you do not want to pass up the “Chips Bar” which is basically an order of French fries or homemade potato chips with several options for toppings. We chose the beer cheese/bacon/chive topping and it was delicious!
We dined on their opening night and both chose sandwiches for our first visit. One Reuben and one pretzel-crusted chicken sandwich, both of which were yummy and artfully presented. There are quite a few sides to choose from, and I have to recommend the buttery champ. This Irish gal has a soft spot for a good scoop of mashed potatoes, and these were quite good. Extra butter and scallions give them a great flavor and they paired will with my Reuben. See the whole menu here.
The staff was prompt and friendly and one of the owners stopped by to chat and seemed genuinely interested in our feedback. His family was dining there as well and he said TOPH welcomes kids and their goal is to be a family-friendly dining option.
Restrooms were clean but lacked changing tables (UPDATED: After we published this review the owners contacted us to say that changing tables were being added soon). The only drawback we noticed from a family dining perspective was the noise level. By virtue of the layout with the large bar in the middle, the background noise might be a little much for babies or little ones with noise sensitivity – it is a pub after all! Dining before the after-work crowd arrives would likely be your best bet to avoid that.
Overall our experience was positive and I look forward to going back to try more from their menu. TOPH also offers a Sunday brunch. You can see lots of pictures of their menu items if you like them on their Facebook Page, which is actively maintained with updates and restaurant news.
The mom of three rambunctious redheads, Meg Nester is a Chicago area native and wannabe crafter extraordinaire. When she’s not tending to her boys (and baby girl) or training for triathlons, you can find her in the garage wielding her beloved power tools or firing up a kiln full of enamel jewelry.