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Bites Nearby: McCormick's Irish Pub and Restaurant

New Wayzata pub serves up pints and artisan comfort food.

McCormick’s Pub and Restaurant has joined Wayzata’s Lake Street lineup. McCormick’s opened its doors last week and offers an atmosphere accented by dark wood floors and paneling and bright red walls dominated by photos of John F. Kennedy, Irish authors and vintage Guinness advertisements.

At the bar, patrons relax in comfort while sharing laughter and a bit of the blarney. The pub offers a selection of Irish liquor and, of course, beers, including Guinness, Smithwicks, Harp, Stella Artois, Summit Honeymoon Saison, Harriet Brewing West Side IPA and Surly Furious. All are served with the proper amount of foam.

“A properly poured Guinness is a beautiful thing,” says the restaurant’s owner, Tim McCormick.

McCormick, who lives in Orono, says the pub is a byproduct of his Irish-American upbringing and his time in both Boston and Ireland. 

“Growing up, I always felt a connection to my Irish ancestry and Ireland,” he said of his pub venture. “My travels to Ireland strengthened that connection, as well as my love and appreciation for the Irish pub as a warm, enveloping gathering place for members of the community. Additionally, the time I spent living in Boston, where there are so many fantastic little Irish pubs, strengthened my desire to one day open one myself.”

When it comes to the menu, customers won’t find the traditional corned beef and cabbage or shepherd’s pie at McCormick’s. Instead McCormick has opted for a more upscale selection of meats and seafood. Ireland is surrounded by the sea and renowned for its long tradition of fishing.

Starter options include salads, ries with Béarnaise sauce, harvest and Spanish-inspired flat breads, cheese plates, fillet sliders, steak tartar and oysters. Main courses are fresh and hearty, with choices ranging from hamburgers to chicken and seafood.

The cuisine is decidedly more artisan: McCormick’s hamburger is layered with Guinness-braised short ribs, pancetta, white cheddar and thyme aioli. The chicken arrives with a country gravy, spiced to lick-the-plate perfection. Fresh salmon is served atop fresh garden peas and large couscous with bacon, parmesan sauce and truffle.

As for dessert, don’t miss the Bailey’s Irish Crème cheesecake, with an Irish coffee on the side.  

McCormick’s offers patio seating overlooking downtown Wayzata and the scenic Wayzata Bay where, on any given evening, guests are bound to see a number of familiar faces. Last Thursday the list included a city councilman, a former U.S. Congressman, a local builder and a surgeon.

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