A New Irish Pub Complete’s Feargal McKinney’s Dallas Bar Trifecta on Henderson Avenue
With the opening of Spider Murphy’s, Dublin-born Feargal McKinney has hit a trifecta of local Irish bars on Henderson Avenue in Dallas. The owner of 22 year old The Old Monk and the newer Skellig, McKinney (owner of Pubsmith LLC) and operations manager Charles Reis have taken over the former Bar Stellar space – right in the middle of their other two pubs.
“We’ve been talking about the idea for Spider Murphy’s for years,” Reis told PaperCity. “And we both felt connected to the building [formerly Vickery Park for a decade before it closed in 2017]. There’s a lot of energy on the block and when the space became available we thought it was a great opportunity to triple Henderson. “
Spider Murphy’s will be an Irish pub at its core, but has a few twists and turns to differentiate it from its Henderson counterparts.
“The menu will have more cocktails and less beer-driven,” says Reis. “Of course we will still have European beer, Irish whiskey and scotch, but as our customers evolve, we will be serious about cocktails.”
Chef Oliver Sitrin (Bullion, Blind Butcher) helped create the menu for Spider Murphy’s, which is also different from the Old Monk’s classic fish and chips and steamed mussels menu. “We’ll have classic bar food in a more interesting way,” says Reis. “There will be a lot of Tex-Mex and Southwestern flavors.”
You may be wondering where the name Spider Murphy came from – it was me, so I asked. “It’s not such an exciting story,” laughs Reis. “It’s named after Peter Richard” Spider “Stacy von [Celtic rock band] The Pogues. It actually popped up in a name get-together two bars ago and Feargal just loved it and thought it was fun. “
In the former Stellar bar, the new Spider Murphy’s pub offers a classic Irish pub with new concepts. (Courtesy Spider Murphy’s)
If you’ve seen the building that is painted black all over and has a dark interior with low ceilings, the name fits perfectly. There are mysterious, moody vibes everywhere and an authenticity that gives the duo to all of their meeting places.
“The appearance of the place comes from a trip to Dublin we took a few years ago,” says Reis. “There were the classic Irish pubs, but there are also newer pubs that still pick up the story with a new riff.”
The covered outdoor terrace was renovated and a wall was added that divides the room into another uncovered area. The goal is to open Spider Murphy’s before St. Patrick’s Day – the first week of March. How happy!