1) explain what I was doing reviewing a seven-year-old Irish pub in the first place, which mean that I wanted to:
2) acknowledge, in fairness, that while Slainte had been promoting its new "gastropub" fare it has never quite come out, to my knowledge, and called itself a "gastropub"
3) back up and re-introduce the concept of a"gastropub," with a mild defense of the concept, an easy thing to make fun of, until you come across a real and true example
4) all while being careful to admit that at least half of a "gastropub" menu will typically resemble a basic pub menu
5) mention the pretty dining room
6) describe the essential weird thing that happened on this review -- when we were sitting there, looking at the menu in the pretty dining room, it just wasn't obvious at all what the new menu items were. We correctly uncovered, and ordered, a few of them. But we left a handful others on the vine
7) conclude that it shouldn't have mattered, because everything in a gastropub should be special; unless a place is half a gastropub and half a traditional pub, which is a terrible idea, not to mention impossible
8) say how disappointed I was, because I think Slainte is genuinely trying to improve its fare
Some of this survived into the final version. Not all of it.
Baltimore Sun photo/Barbara Haddock Taylor