Restaurant Review: Mavis Winkle's Irish Pub in Independence Ohio

With two competitive Irish dancers in the household, we spend many of the year’s weekends immersed in Irish culture. Of course, when traveling to competitions throughout the Midwest, we have to eat somewhere, right? After a full day of Irish jigs and reels--with fiddles and accordions still resonating in our heads--we seem to frequently find ourselves venturing into Irish pubs for dinner. A recent weekend trip found us in Independence, Ohio--with a hotel reservation around the corner from Mavis Winkle’s Irish Pub. How did Mavis Winkles Irish Pub stand up to review?

Mavis Winkle’s has a great location--but, it’s easy to miss. The Independence location is actually within walking distance from some of the hotels off Rockside Road--had we realized this, we would have walked over through the adjoining parking lots. Mavis Winkle’s Irish Pub is located on the bottom floor of the Crown Centre Building--and is easy to spot if you are on the lookout for the neon green canopy on the restaurant. We missed it--and what would have been a five minute walk turned into a 20 minute drive.

Is the atmosphere of Mavis Winkle’s Irish Pub family friendly? Okay--I’ve been inside Irish pubs that are more suited to bachelor parties than to family dinners--so we are always a little hesitant to march the girls into what could, essentially, be a bar. In the case of Mavis Winkle’s Irish Pub--it’s more of a family style bar and grill (like an Applebees or Rockne’s). We were a little disappointed that there was not even a hint of Irish music on a Saturday evening.

How was the food at Mavis Winkle’s Irish Pub in Independence? The menu at Mavis Winkle’s was a bit of a surprise. There is really an unusual selection of food offerings--not simply the typical fried, batter dipped, and heavy pub foods. Of course, they offer burgers, wings, and fish & chips--as well as Irish fare like cabbage, corned beef, rashers and boxty. But--they have lighter, healthier, meatless options like quinoa salad, veggie pitas and sunflower beet burgers on the menu too.

Bread and Drinks 
We decided to skip the appetizers--something that we generally do not do--but, we were all a little tired and nothing seemed to grab our attention.  Our server brought out rolls with our drink order.

My husband and I liked them--the girls didn’t. They were something of a mix between soda biscuits and garlic bread.

As we considered the bar menu, the server suggested that we try the Taste of Ireland which includes 6 oz. pours of Smithwick’s, Guiness, and Harp--plus a 4th pour of choice. We chose the Great Lakes Brewery Dortmunder Gold Lager. The Dortmunder was not our favorite--and I think we were both wishing that we had gone with an extra Smithwick’s or Guiness instead.

The Food at Mavis Winkle's Irish Pub

The girls ordered from the kids menu. The middle one is generally semi-vegetarian. Meat is not a necessity in her world. The cheese quesadilla and mixed fruit were her picks.

It was simple, plain and usual kid's menu style quesadilla...but, that's what she likes, so it was a hit.  

The youngest is a meat and seafood lover--so the fish & chips immediately sparked her interest--but, she wanted to substitute the fries for the Colcannon Potatoes.

She loves cabbage and potatoes--but the thick mashed potato/chunky cabbage  texture wasn’t what she had hoped for. The fish was a bit hit though.

The husband and I generally select a variety of items and share the meals. He selected Casey’s Corned Beef with a side of Colcannon Potatoes.

The sandwich was a huge stack of corned beef and Swiss cheese on fresh rye bread with a side of horseradish mustard sauce. It was a lot of corned beef….and not much else. I wanted to like it because I love corned beef sandwiches, but it was a little plain. The Colcannon Potatoes were more a hit with my husband than the little girls.

I ordered the BBQ Rasher Burger and Quinoa Salad.

Wow. This was a huge, absolutely loaded burger. It’s a massive hamburger patty on a buttery, pretzel roll--topped with cheddar cheese, tomato, lettuce, onion, BBQ sauce, and Irish bacon (rasher). It was a hit with everyone at the table (and was big enough to share with everyone!)--and for BBQ’d meat lovers--this one is a must try. The quinoa salad, however, was not --so I was a little glad that I had not caved to guilt and tried their meatless burgers.

Would I recommend Mavis Winkle’s Irish Pub? The server was wonderful, the atmosphere was family friendly--although it wasn’t as “Irish Pub-like” as we had expected. The food was good--with the burger being the only stand out item from our table. We would eat there again--but, would not necessarily go out of our way to return.

Mavis Winkle's Irish Pub on Urbanspoon | Mavis Winkle's Irish Pub on Foodio54
Disclosure:  We were not compensated for this review--we simply wanted to share our family's experiences!

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