Food for Thought: Good times On Tap at sports bar

By PERRY SMITH / Staff Writer

INVERNESS – Owner Craig Beagle had a fairly simple philosophy when he took over On Tap Sports Caf/ nine months ago.

“I want people to come here, have fun and be comfortable,” Beagle said. Mission accomplished.

With a larger-than-life, 200-inch high-definition television, a wall of more than 60 beers and microbrews from around the world and hearty portions of wings and Tex Mex, On Tap is a great place to catch the game, eat an affordable lunch or have fun with friends any night of the week.

“We needed to bring in more T.V.s to make us what we are,” he added, explaining he wanted a place where you could bring a friend, a date or the family.

Menu

On the menu there are several levels of buffalo wing sauce ranging from mild to “beyond scorching” that should come with a warning; anything beyond “hot” is not for the faint of heart or taste bud.

It’s not a run-of-the-mill bar menu though. On Tap has a local chef that creates the menu, responsible for dishes like their catfish and ‘slaw, a meat and three that changes regularly, pork chops and a club burger made from angus beef.

The kid’s menu has a smaller selection, but all of its items are under $3. If you like traditional subs, Beagle, a Northeastern transplant who now calls the South his home, put a variety of hoagies on the menu including a few vegetarian options.

Atmosphere

This is where On Tap really sets itself as a cut above. In addition to the television sports packages, the restaurant also has events like Trivia Night Wednedays, Cocktail Tuesdays and Pint Night Thursdays.

The Southern Pecan brew from Mississippi is an excellent choice if you’re shopping from the beer wall and Beagle said he’s partial to Smithwicks, an Irish red ale or Rogue that is a relatively new micro brew from the Northwest.

Service

Beagle said most of the staff has remained the same since he took over, and a lot of that probably has to do with the report they have with On Tap’s regular customers. Plus, many are local students who seem to really enjoy working there.

The service is friendly and attentive, making On Tap Sports Caf/ a great choice to hang out any time the game is on.

FIND IT

810 Inverness Corners

Birmingham, AL 35242

437-1999

Hours:

Sun. – Mon.: 11:00 a.m. to Midnight

Tue. – Sat.: 10:30 a.m. to 2 a.m