Red River will bid farewell to another longtime bar when Bull McCabe’s Irish Pub, opened in 1999 by two brothers, closes at the end of the month.
The brothers, Gerry Langan and Johnny Maginnis, both from Dublin, have sold their pub to Side Bar owner Trey Spaw, according to the Austin Chronicle. Maginnis didn’t say what the new proprietor would turn Bull McCabe’s into, but you can rest assured, at least, that it’s going to be something good: “No cheesy bar will work on Red River,” he told the Chronicle’s Kevin Curtin.
“The closure marks the end of an era for the west side of Red River's 700 block, once housing three music venues in Headhunters, Room 710, and Bull McCabe's,” Curtin wrote in this week’s Playback column. “The latter's corner stage was a popular platform for street punk and Oi! bands, including Brewtality Inc. and Sniper 66, as well as evil country (Candler Wilkinson), and occasional thrash (M.O.D.).”
You can bet that Langan and Maginnis are going to make the most of the few weeks they have left, bringing back some of their favorite bands for a final farewell.
Bull McCabe’s isn’t the only one in Austin’s short supply of Irish pubs to make a big announcement this year: Fado in the Warehouse District stated last month that it’s moving out of its current space and on the hunt for another downtown. There’s good news, too. Another outpost of the Sixth Street fixture B.D. Riley’s opened in the Mueller neighborhood earlier this year.
The Statesman wrote about Bull McCabe's in 2005, noting that the bar, “opened in 1999 by a pair of brothers with serious Dublin accents, eschews froufrou and shillelaghs for well-drawn pints of Guinness (or Murphy's or Harp or Smithwick's) and shot glasses containing regulars' tabs. (Yes, you must be a real regular to get a tab.) Rugby players and men in soccer jerseys sometimes stop by, and patrons' accents tend to Kerry and Dublin as well as Houston and Austin.”
Sound like a place you’re going to miss? Say your good-byes at 714 Red River St.