Don't be fooled by the new owners.
I was just told last night that they don't do 2-for-1 specials on event night. What was the event they had? A guy with an acoustic guitar with less than 10 people watching.
They shut down the back "patio" so the owner could park his truck. On weekends, you're greeted by two ogres wearing security vests. I realize the bar is not in the best neighborhood, but the bouncer during the old management was an 80 year old guy that weighed about 100 lbs.
I could care less about a flat screen TV. Most people are happy with a fun environment and a properly-poured drink.
Half Time Rec = Esquire worthy again.
New ownership has brought: 2 for 1s from 7-9 every day, flat screens for the games, a ping pong table, 2010 GoldenTee and Buck Hunter, plus a few aesthetic upgrades. In addition, there is a completely new staff that actually seems to enjoy having you there spending money. They have reduced their drink costs, reduced the cover charge to one night per week yet have continued to book talent. Perhaps the best part is that they left it as a great guys night out: basement bocce ball, billiards, and live Irish music remains a weekly (Thursday) highlight. If the talent that was hired for behind the bar would learn how to pour a proper pint of Guinness and the owners maybe add some Heggies pizza and update the outdated tap beer selection, they would really have something. But alas, there is reason to drink in the Como area once again.
New Owners - Still Great St Paul Option.
Need updated review of the Half Time Rec. As someone who lives right across the street - new owners have officially taken over 08/09. It is now owned by ex-Mpls cops and some silent partner. Still draws an eclectic mix of individuals. Still have bocce ball downstairs and will continue winter leagues; still has Irish music (and it's been back to Irish since April 09) - HH - from 7-9PM (2-4-1 incl. likes of crown royal), which is something new. Cajun night - which draws a ridiculous crowd will still continue on Sun.
Used to be great.
I used to love this place, but it has changed. It's not even an irish bar anymore. I'm not sure if the ownership has changed, but the workers and the atmosphere has degraded. They have stopped booking as many irish bands, and the service is really rude. I went in with a group of people for a drink on a weekday night and was yelled at by the bartender because someone wanted to buy a shirt. I have been also been threatened by a bouncer for pointing out that people were sneaking in. It's really too bad because it was one of my favorite bars.
A popular neighborhood staple offering live Irish music since the 1980s.. In Short This St. Paul institution is split into two rooms with decidedly different personalities. One is a working-class pub with pool tables and dartboards, the perfect spot to unwind after the daily grind. The other room is an Irish nightclub, featuring dimly lit tables and a red velvet-curtained stage for karaoke and live Irish music. For a twist, Texas Hold' Em tournaments go on Monday nights. Then there are the games: Who says bocce ball is played outdoors?
User review by kateygirl.
I don't know what that guy is talking about! The Half Ti me Rec is THE place to be on St. Pat's Day! I think a $5 cover to see the Brigade and become a part of history by being there is WELL woth the money! I always have a blast there! I like that they have repainted and I like the new non irish music they are stating to bring in! I love the rec! It;'s a place to go where everyone knows your name!
Half Time Rec - Not the place on St. Pat's Day.
For St. Patrick's Day celebration, this is not the place to go. A can of beer was $4.00. The bartender moved at a snal's pace (we waited 15 minutes to get a beer and there wasn't anyone in front of us) and there was a cover charge after 4:00 pm. The place is fun but talk about ripping customers off.
the music is great.
I have been going to "the Rec" since the early 90's and I will keep coming back but not as often. The barstaff has really gone down hil,not one of them can pour proper pint. The atmosphere is funky and this is the only Irish bar (not Pub) that charges a cover for the music.
Great Fun, Great Music.
Check out the Rec on Tuesday nights for the Tim Malloy's. Better than the Dubliner, by far. Bocce in the basement. Darts, hard and soft tip. Pool Tables. Golden Tee. Pinball. Can't get enough...