I usually don’t do reviews on restaurants that I know will score poorly on our Gluten-Free rating system. Still, we had a particularly poor experience at Liam Fitzpatrick’s, so I figured it wouldn’t hurt to do a review for the blog.
When I first started coming to the Lake Mary area about 10 years ago (2010),. Liam Fitzpatricks was in my must-eat places. The food was excellent, the wait staff was excellent, and the atmosphere was excellent. I loved everything about this place. Things over time have gotten worse and worse.
Over the years, the menu has changed a lot. Most of our family’s favorites have been either taken off the menu, or the price has gone up so much that it really isn’t worth the money vs. cheaper items on the menu. If I spend $30+ on an N.Y Strip steak, I will probably not buy it at an Irish pub. At an Irish Pub, I’m most likely going with Irish food like Shepherded’s Pie, Fish and Chips, Corned Beef or Bangers and Mashed. Now needing to live a Gluten-Free lifestyle, none of those (except for Corned Beef) are an option. I need to dig a little deeper into the Menu.
Before I dig too deep into what we ordered and what we ate, I want to go over our most recent experience quickly. We walk into the restaurant, and immediately to the left, they have a giant bowl of mints sitting there. As any 5 years old would do, mine went over and grabbed a big handful of them. With COVID, this should be a big no-no anyway.
Another troubling part of our trip was that it was clearly dirty when we were seated at our table with crumbs still on it. I politely said, “I don’t think this table is clean” she proceeded to tell me it was just cleaned. I pointed out the curbs on the table and asked for it to be cleaned again. The hostess went and got some cleaning supplies and recleaned the table, but after touching my son’s mints, he left on the table. He was getting ready to remove them, but she didn’t give him a chance to do so.
My daughter and son both have some sensory processing issues, so eating out can sometimes be challenging. There were items on the menu that they would eat, but they were not that hungry. They wanted to wait out lunch to have leftover pizza at home. When we let our waitress know that they were not going to dine with us, she rolled her eyes, visibly annoyed, and tried to push different items on the menu. She took mine and my spouse’s order and left. We then did not see her again until our meal was almost complete. No refills were offered until we were done with our food. The waitress was snotty and really made our experience at Liam Fitzpatrick’s very poor.
My Experience at Liam Fitzpatrick’s
On this trip, because of the lack of a gluten-free meal option, I went with an appetizer of Peel and Eat Shrimp. They were pretty good. They gave me the choice of hot or cold. I decided on heated. Then I asked for a side of butter, and it was great with the shrimp. I know that I should use cocktail sauce, but I don’t care for it. The shrimp were pretty good; some got a little overcooked when they heated them, but they were high quality and tasted very good for the most part. This was by far the high point of our visit.
The beer options (on the menu) were not great (Although slightly better than Teak) if you have a gluten allergy. I was pretty impressed that they did have Angry Orchard on tap. That is my usual go-to draft drink. The dessert menu had no gluten-free options. Which I am finding is the norm for places that don’t have a dedicated gluten-free movie.
My wife had the Guinness Wings for the other food that was ordered, and she said that they were as good as always. My son had their giant pretzel, but he did not care for it. However, he is a bit of a pretzel snob and likes soft pretzels cooked to perfection. This pretzel was a bit burnt and hard for his liking.
Liam Fitzpatrick’s Conclusion
Overall our experience was not great. Food just like away was great, but just like over the years, the service has gone downhill. I really wish they would have a Gluten-Free menu, or at the very least, a few meal options that can be Gluten-Free. If you’re an Irish Pub, you really shouldn’t run out of Corned Beef and Cabbage, especially if it’s your only main dish that can be made Gluten-Free.
It was very troubling to see the staff not really seem concerned with COVID-19 protocols. I will say it was nice that they were not seating every table. The cleanliness and lack of understanding that you don’t touch anything that a patron will touch or eat. Seeing all of this, I wouldn’t trust the waitstaff or kitchen to follow cleanliness rules. I don’t trust them to make sure that my food has as little to no contact with anything that could have gluten in it.
I would not recommend Liam Fitzpatrick’s if you have a gluten allergy or Celiac Disease. My thinking the risk of ingesting is extremely high. The waitstaff doesn’t take cleanliness seriously, so why would the kitchen staff?