HOME > Chowhound > Greater Boston Area >

Irish pub in Brookline? Can't remember...

lemiller610 Mar 10, 2008 02:58 PM

I used to live in Boston for years and then moved to Seattle... but alas I am planning a trip home and obsessively planning my every meal!

I remember a traditional fish and chips that i had in a very Irish pub in Brookline... Very small, the fish and chips served in newspaper.... other menu items were Shepard's pie and other traditional Irish fare. I remember it was really small and dark and kinda off the beaten path.

Help me remember this place!!! What is it called?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. g
    Guinness02122 RE: lemiller610 Mar 10, 2008 03:01 PM

    Matt Murphy's probably

    2 Replies
    1. re: Guinness02122
      lemiller610 RE: Guinness02122 Mar 10, 2008 03:14 PM

      that's it... thanks!

      is it still a solid place?

      1. re: lemiller610
        onefineleo RE: lemiller610 Mar 10, 2008 04:58 PM

        Yes, we were there Saturday night. Delicious lamb sandwich. Truly wonderful pub food. Great bread. Extremely friendly service. Walking in always puts a smile on my face.

    2. m
      MtVernon RE: lemiller610 Mar 11, 2008 09:20 AM

      Yes Matt Murphy's for sure. It is one of my favorite places to go. Do they have some good Irish pubs out in Seattle?

      2 Replies
      1. re: MtVernon
        lemiller610 RE: MtVernon Mar 11, 2008 10:46 AM

        There are a few hole-in-the-wall Irish pubs here in Seattle, but nothing to be fanatical about.
        The microbrews are good, a lot coming from Portland, OR and Seattle.

        But there's definitely not the old Southie Irish blood out here. :)

        1. re: lemiller610
          Guinness02122 RE: lemiller610 Mar 11, 2008 02:45 PM

          The Murphy's Irish Stout is very nice there. I think they serve Smithwicks and Bulmers cider also (or is it Magners...same thing i think)

      2. BarmyFotheringayPhipps RE: lemiller610 Mar 11, 2008 11:59 AM

        Allstonian and I finally got out to Matt Murphy's a few weeks ago. I had been craving fish and chips and we kept hearing theirs were tops.

        Man, some of the worst fish and chips I have ever had in my life. The chips were adequate, actually, but the fish! It was literally like someone had taken the trimmings from a proper cod filet -- little short ends and flaps less than a quarter-inch thick and under three inches long -- and breaded and fried them. (Breaded, not battered, which is all wrong in and of itself.) They were thin, floppy, basically tasteless and pretty much entirely without merit. I felt deeply disappointed, and it doesn't make me ever want to go back.

        4 Replies
        1. re: BarmyFotheringayPhipps
          Chrispy75 RE: BarmyFotheringayPhipps Mar 11, 2008 12:05 PM

          Your experience with Matt Murphy's fish and chips is the reason that I stopped going there. My last experience was in July of 2007 and it doesn't sound like much has changed.

          They used to be good a few years ago, but once the owners left, it's gone way downhill especially for the price they charge.

          1. re: Chrispy75
            overproofed RE: Chrispy75 Mar 12, 2008 06:42 AM

            As far as I know the owners haven't left - at least not all of them. As of January, 2008 (when Murphy's got hit with liquor violations), Siobhan Carew was still the owner of Matt Murphy's (as well as the two Pomodoro locations). She was one of the original owners, along with her ex-husband, Matt Murphy. Matt, who was the original chef, left a long time ago - I think it was back in the late '90's. He resurfaced at Stone's Public House in Ashland a few years ago, but he's no longer there.

            I thought the food went downhill at Murphy's as soon as Matt Murphy left. They kept many of the recipes, but didn't quite have the execution down. It was still good, but not nearly as good as when he was there, so I stopped going. I think that as far as food goes, they've been coasting on their reputation for years.

            1. re: overproofed
              Chrispy75 RE: overproofed Mar 12, 2008 10:25 AM

              Wow, it's been that long since Matt left. Where does the time go?

          2. re: BarmyFotheringayPhipps
            lschow RE: BarmyFotheringayPhipps Mar 14, 2008 06:46 AM

            oh man, i just had the same experience yesterday for lunch. i was all excited about fish and chips, but when they arrived all wrapped in in the newspaper, they were not soggy, really, but definitely not crispy and pretty pale. the chips were crunchier than the fish. so disappointed! i didn't know if it was just me or if the fish has always been this way here. don't think i'll go back for this dish, but maybe for a few of their sandwiches, which sounded appetizing.

          3. n
            nightsky RE: lemiller610 Mar 15, 2008 03:24 PM

            Also sorely disappointed by the fish and chips. To make matters worse, the waitress almost started a fire by moving a candle right under the newspaper that was holding my dinner! I think the newspaper serving sack is a total gimmick to distract from the mediocre fish.

            9 Replies
            1. re: nightsky
              BostonCookieMonster RE: nightsky Mar 17, 2008 07:33 AM

              You all are making me doubt my sanity. I had fish and chips there a few weeks ago and thought it was fantastic, much better than I remembered.

              1. re: BostonCookieMonster
                hiddenboston RE: BostonCookieMonster Mar 17, 2008 07:36 AM

                I had fish and chips at Matt Murphy's several years back and they were about the best I've had in the Boston area, but I have read so many downhill alerts about the place over the past couple of years that I'm almost scared to go back.

                1. re: hiddenboston
                  BostonCookieMonster RE: hiddenboston Mar 17, 2008 07:44 AM

                  Well, you know, they have other things on the menu ...

                  I find Matt Murphy's less cozy and pubby since they redecorated, but I still like it a lot. (I usually get something other than f&c because I generally consider that outdoor summer food, not cozy winter pub food, but I think it's good.) The service is considerably less uptight lately, also.

                  1. re: BostonCookieMonster
                    hiddenboston RE: BostonCookieMonster Mar 17, 2008 07:54 AM

                    Yes, like Guinness. :-D

                    Maybe I'll head back to try the place again, but I want to get to a couple of pubs in Malden first (Honey Fitz and Hugh O'Neill's).

                    1. re: BostonCookieMonster
                      Ralphie_in_Boston RE: BostonCookieMonster Mar 17, 2008 08:33 AM

                      For anyone who heads back there for Sunday Brunch, please report. I haven't been in a couple years but it was always good...hopefullly it still is.

                      1. re: Ralphie_in_Boston
                        madcow RE: Ralphie_in_Boston Mar 17, 2008 08:52 AM

                        I was there for Sunday brunch one wintry Sunday morning a few weeks back. It was very good. I had their excellent clam chowder. My kids each had the chicken soup and my husband had their oatmeal. It was all very good. My only complaint was that we were sitting way too close to the live music which made conversation difficult at best.

                        1. re: madcow
                          SSqwerty RE: madcow Mar 17, 2008 09:56 AM

                          I can recommend to you the oxtail soup. ...even if you think you don't like oxtails. It's like the best beef barley soup you've ever tasted, and what could be wrong with that?

                          1. re: SSqwerty
                            foodiesrus RE: SSqwerty Mar 17, 2008 01:17 PM

                            Ditto on the oxtail soup!

                          2. re: madcow
                            Ralphie_in_Boston RE: madcow Mar 17, 2008 10:17 AM

                            Thanks. I recall having a very good salmon omelette there as well as that oatmeal (porridge?). My kids like the yogurt with granola and fruit...and the music.

                            Oh yeah, and the Irish Breakfast was also very good too!
                            Thanks for your report.

                Show Hidden Posts