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“A SIGN FROM HEAVEN”

Banter Irish Bar and Kitchen
Ranked #4 of 230 Restaurants in Forest Hills
Cuisines: Irish
Dining options: After-hours, Breakfast
Restaurant details
Dining options: After-hours, Breakfast
Reviewed July 2, 2017

I was walking along Queens Blvd with a friend, heading for a local restaurant, and we saw Banter on the corner - and in the window was a keg and a bog with the Jameson name burned into the wood. We looked at each other, and decided this was a sign, so with no information about the place, we went in.

Not a large place - crowded, and moderately noisy. But a friendly hostess at the door welcomed us, and they arranged a table for two and we were quickly seated. My friend had a briefcase and a large umbrella, which they took and stored for us. The waiter told us they had the largest selection of whiskey in New York, and looking at the bar list, I believe it. First thing I saw was a house cocktail made with Teeling (A lovely but little known Irish whiskey) They had a long full page of just Irish whiskey, including both kinds of Jameson Cask, and three kinds of Teeling.

Appetizers - we had a scotch egg (beautifully done) and Jameson stuffed rolls and bubble and squeak. (If you don't know it, go forth and experience a wonderful taste experience. And all of these were wonderfully done.)

One of the house special is a lamb shank and we both went along. As we waited for the dinner to arrive we greatly enjoyed the appetizers. The waiter was very good - Irish himself - and when the shank was ready we were informed, even though we had not quite finished the first round. (We took the leftover bits away with us.)

Huge portions and beautifully served, We had left the preparation of the meat up to the chef - slightly well done but moist, lovely presentation, lots of vegetables and mash, and we watched with admiration the presentation of other dishes at tables around us. A salmon salad looked wonderful, the lamb stew was artistically served - the staff was friendly and efficient and stepped up whether or not "our" server.

No question of dessert - we each took away large containers of our entree - lamb for breakfast! I even went into the kitchen to compliment the chef.

The restaurant is one block away from the subway exit at Forest Hills-71st and two blocks away from the LIRR station. The bar list alone is worth the trip from Manhattan or any of the other boroughs, the place is charming and the food not expensive (the lamb was $25), the staff is delightful and a number of tables for two are along the window wall. In good weather, there are outside tables as well. This was a real find - a sign from heaven indeed!

Thank RhinoJohn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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14 - 18 of 84 reviews

Reviewed June 29, 2017

Went there for Fathers day and our burgers were on point. Their beer selection leans a bit more traditional with a few craft taps. Overall, feels like a nice upscale Irish pub!

Thank Nikhil S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed May 28, 2017 via mobile

What a find! Most delicious freshly made corned beef hash served with two poached eggs and a large deliciously dressed salad. Corned beef hash was served in baked potato skins. So unique! Omelette came with three fillings and home fries, toast and a small salad. All entrees come with a mimosa or Bloody Mary. Our server was Kristin and she was awesome! It's such a friendly place. Will definitely return!

Thank sabrams13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed May 4, 2017 via mobile

This is our neighborhood go to place. Brunch on weekends, lunch on days off and dinner for date night. The prices are average to high for the neighborhood but the food is always amazing. Salads are good, burgers and fries are great, fish and chips are spot on and pretty much anything on their brunch menu works really well. You can even get a Scotch egg! Grab one and some Jameson's!

Thank WendyLauWong
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed March 30, 2017

For St. Patrick's Day, I always try to find an Irish pub for lunch and dinner. After doing research on the places serving Irish food in my area, I chose The Banter for dinner. I was a little worried that they didn't take reservations on St. Patrick's Day, since that might mean that a possible long wait to be seated was possible; however, when I went there in the early evening, I was pleasantly surprised that not only was the wait shorter than the staff had anticipated, but also that the staff were very friendly about both making sure that I was both on the waiting list and getting me to a table once my turn came and one was open. Naturally, The Banter was very lively that night (I think they were four deep at the bar), but I have absolutely no complaints about slowness of service or the quality of the food; in fact, I can recommend both very highly! My own dinner (shown in the Recommended Dishes below) was not only delicious but also just the right serving size; my peeks at some of the dishes served to other patrons assured me that the staff are determined to make sure customers are more than satisfied (the quantity of the Corned Beef and Cabbage at a nearby table was proof of that!). All in all, as close to a perfect St. Patrick's dining experience as I can remember; I may even come back when it isn't St. Patrick's Day to try some of the other dishes on the menu!

    • Value
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    • Food
Thank tonyscheinman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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