Local Irish pub on tap

HARLINGEN — The Guinness could be flowing sometime this summer at a new Irish pub which is on tap for the Stuart Place Crossing development.

The retail development is located between Cheddar’s Scratch Kitchen and the new Texas Regional Bank headquarters.

Already operating at the site are Venture X, the flex office concept, Russo’s New York-Style Pizza and the Tropical Smoothie Café. A Wing Barn also is planned for the $6.8 million development.

Within three to four months, depending on the permitting process, The Lucky Barrel Bar and Grill hopes to hang its sign out front as well.

The Harlingen Planning and Zoning Commission board voted unanimously this past week to approve a Specific Use Permit to allow a bar/lounge at the 6710 W. Expressway 83 location.

The plan next goes to the City Commission.

Board members voiced some reservations prior to the vote over whether the Harlingen Police Department had signed off on the bar.

But bar owner Benito Garcia, who also owns the Tipsy Tavern Bar and Grill in Harlingen, said he had met with police department officials that very day to show them the security system at his current lounge.

“They reviewed my camera system to make sure it was recording” and the hard drive had enough space, said Garcia, who added he has had five nightclubs throughout South Texas in the past 10 years.

Police also wanted to make sure the surveillance cameras were up to date and lighting for the bar and lounge, including at the entrances, was adequate, he said.

The city’s police and fire departments, as well as the current occupants of the development, voiced no objection to the Irish pub, city Planning and Zoning Department officials said.

“We’re going to kind of do something different” with The Lucky Barrel, Garcia said following the meeting.

“We’re really looking to incorporate a lot of new technology,” he added. “We’re going out in March to a convention in Las Vegas for the bar-nightclub event so we’re looking to bring a whole lot of new ideas and concepts back to South Texas.”

Garcia said there will be a full kitchen at The Lucky Barrel, and the menu will be similar to that of the Tipsy Tavern. Hours of operation will be between 4 p.m. and 2 a.m.

He said it takes about three months after a liquor license is approved to open, and he hopes to finish the build-out at Stuart Place Crossing and have his new pub operating within four months.

“I have a construction company as well, so we work hard and it should be something that happens pretty quick,” Garcia said.

Stuart Place Crossing

Russo’s New York Pizzeria

Tropical Smoothie Café

Venture X

Wing Barn (coming)

The Lucky Barrel Bar and Grille (planned)