We headed over to Rounders in Manchester, which has taken over the space previously occupied by Tommy K’s on Brown Avenue.
As a sports bar it is comfortable and spacious with a menu that goes beyond your standard pub fare.
Besides all of the usual pub-style offerings, Rounders adds specials such as Shepherd’s Pie, Lobster Pie and Liver & Onions to its already wide-ranging menu. The food is good; there are specials on beer and drinks and appetizers — especially during Patriots’ games — and the service is quick and friendly.
Specialty concoctions from the bar include creations such as a Hail Mary Bloody, Moscow Mule and Rounders Hurricane, and house wine is $6 a glass.
There are about 10 high-topped bar tables spread among a dozen or so tables for four, along with an L-shaped bar — all under plenty of TVs. One Sunday at Rounders there were four different games going on, with more (including the Patriots) to come.
We ordered a glass of house Sauvignon Blanc and a 32-ounce pitcher of Coors Light ($5, a Sunday special) to go with our appetizer, the Corkscrew Shrimp ($9). The shrimp were served in abundance, but they were on the unimaginative side — simply deep-fried with no discernible spicing — but they were tasty when dunked in the spicy cocktail sauce on the side.
We had pub fare in mind when we set out to go to Rounders so we ordered a pizza and a Cheeseburger Club ($9).
There is a good variety of pizza and calzones at Rounders, including Greek pizza, white pizzas and a Mac Burger pizza. We chose a half-Hawaiian and half-Rounders House White Pizza ($11). It was prepared with a crust on the soft side, as requested, and was a nicely built pie with plenty of sauce and ingredients to the edges.
The Hawaiian featured thick, bite-sized cubes of juicy ham, half-slices of bacon and large chunks of pineapple in a juicy and delicious pizza pie.
The House White pizza was a three-cheese (mozzarella, feta, cheddar) with tomato slices and garlic and broccoli with a tasty white sauce.
Very good pizza, we agreed, and a small size was just right for two.
The Cheeseburger Club was nicely prepared, with Swiss cheese, thick slices of tomato, and bacon and lettuce stacked with a medium-thick burger patty and three slices of bread (white, wheat or rye). It was a well-built sandwich, centered on the bread but not too thick in the middle. It did not fall apart, thereby passing an important test by this sandwich aficionado.
If we had not predetermined the the direction of our meal, we would have given more consideration to the rest of the menu.
There you will find Lebanese specialties such as falafel, stuffed cabbage, kafta and grape leaves, along with Italian Alfredo dishes, baked seafood and Parmesan dinners. Or American entrees including steaks, pork chops, chicken kebab, smoked pork loin and Chicken Diablo.
After our meal, Rounders’ bar was filling up quickly as the Pats were about to play, so we did not stay for dessert, but the menu features sweet treats such as baklava, rice pudding and cheesecake with strawberries ($4-$5).
Next time, we’ll visit on a weeknight and have a more leisurely, quiet dinner, choosing among the Lebanese entrees and perhaps a steak. All entrees come with salad and bread, and some seafood dinners include a starch.
Rounders’ menu is robust for all tastes and appetites, and the lounge and TVs will draw crowds for the remainder of football season. It’s a convenient and fun new Manchester place to sit and relax, where anyone can find the right meal at a fair price.