Sloppy Joe, make Mother's special
If you are a game day lunch out sports fan you may have dined — or just drank if that is your game day procedure — at one of the city’s pubs, bars or any place with a large televisions, screaming fans and good food and drinks. At least, this is what I envision the ideal game day set-up to be.
To watch some FIFA World Cup Soccer, I wandered to local watering hole Mother’s Pub and Grill, 1017 W. University Ave., nestled in between Karma Cream and Gyro Plus. I have ventured into this small pub previously for the popular $.40 wing Mondays, and $3 burger and $2 Yuengling pint Wednesdays. There are always seats filled at the bar and tables filled in the main dining area and extra upstairs dining areas.
The popularity of the joint persuaded me to arrive at 11:00, an hour before kickoff, and even then just about every table was filled. We snagged one of the only available tables, which was perpendicular to the large TV screen - definitely not the ideal seat to watch without some serious neck straining.
“We need food.” That’s all my friend Julia had to say when the server, Zach, arrived at the table. The staff is always so chill and casual, as if just another friend joining the group. I can only assume this welcoming casualness sets the tone for the customers who frequent the establishment, too.
Zach suggested the Bloody Mary for starters, although it was anything but typical. This breakfast drink had bacon, sausage and cheese skewered on a toothpick, dangling into the spice-filled drink. How could this culinary adventurer not dare try this twist on a classic? It also came with a free small beer, so there’s that, too.
The breakfast menu — available from 7:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. — appealed to Julia, while I had heard nothing but raves of the Pub Favorites on the standard menu, from Shepherd’s Pie to Pub Style Fish and Chips. There is a complete Mother's pub menu at the Mother's P & G weblink below this featute.
Judging by my previous food adventures, it is no secret that I try new foods whenever possible: The more exotic, the better. This may sound silly, but my big food venture of the day was the Sloppy Joe on Texas Toast. This sandwich lover has never had this particular sandwich before, and honestly felt a bit silly.
“What kind of childhood did you have?” Zach was just as taken aback as Julia upon hearing that I have never had a simple sloppy Joe – a fall-out-of-the-bread sandwiching of meat, lettuce and good messy fun. In the pub’s case, it boasted “Pat’s famous homemade sloppy Joe from a secret family recipe” for just $5.
As the match started my sloppy sandwich was brought out with a side order of tater tots. I’ve had this side dish before at Mother’s, and I have to say that they are always served hot, cooked well and with just the right amount of crisp. My sandwich, as shown by the pictures, overflowed with tender seasoned beef atop a layer of lettuce from in between the two slices of Texas toast. After enjoying a few tots, I slowly picked up the well-packed sandwich as pieces of marinated beef slid down my hand and onto the tray. Although hesitant to dive in, one bite provided a mouthful of crispy, thick bread contrasting the hearty beef chunks dripping with flavor and spice – and by spice I mean this sandwich had a kick. It took a few messy bites to really taste the spiciness of the meat, but I wasn’t complaining.
I felt as if I were reliving a child-like scenario of stereotypical kid food. It had everything from the fun of a mess to the simplicity of meat and bread and even the tater tots dipped in ketchup, which are a pretty kid-friendly addition to a meal.
The server checked on us constantly throughout the roughly three and a half hours of agonizing, edge-of-the-seat game watching that consumed the entire pub. Everyone cheered together, everyone booed together, and what was the most appealing aspect of the pub, other than the well-prepared and reasonably-priced food, was the family aspect that everyone could interact together as if at just another tailgating event.
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- Phone Number: 378-8315
- Address: 1017 W University Ave., Gaineville, FL
- Urban GLOB Location: Midtown
- Web Site: Mother's Pub and Grill
- Latitude: 29.651926
- Longitude: -82.335657