McCreary's Irish Pub and Eatery maintains tradition of Irish food, beer in downtown Franklin

McCreary’s first opened in 2002. (Alex Hosey/Community Impact Newspaper)
McCreary’s first opened in 2002. (Alex Hosey/Community Impact Newspaper)

McCreary’s first opened in 2002. (Alex Hosey/Community Impact Newspaper)

Image description
The cottage pie ($10.25) is made with local ground beef in a gravy base with green peas, carrots, celery and a mixture of herbs and spices. The pie is topped with mashed potatoes and a choice of Swiss or cheddar cheese. The meal comes with a small house salad and homemade Irish soda bread. (Alex Hosey/Community Impact Newspaper)
Image description
Staff are wearing face coverings and protective gear. (Alex Hosey/Community Impact Newspaper)
Image description
The Dublin-style fish and chips dinner ($9.95 for two fillets, $11.95 for three) comes with deep-fried codfish fillets, Irish chips, lemon wedges and homemade tartar sauce. (Alex Hosey/Community Impact Newspaper)
Image description
(Alex Hosey/Community Impact Newspaper)
Image description
Staff are wearing face coverings and protective gear. (Alex Hosey/Community Impact Newspaper)
Natasha Hendrix began working at Main Street’s McCreary’s Irish Pub as a server when it first opened in 2002, and just seven years later, ownership of the pub was passed to her when the McCreary family made the decision to retire.

“March 1, 2009, was my first day [as the owner]. It was a Sunday, I remember, and all the regulars came out,” Hendrix said. “I was starting from scratch, kind of like when you buy your first house, you put everything into it and you have zero dollars in your account, so it was a make-or-break thing for me.”

Since taking ownership of the business over a decade ago, Hendrix said she has striven to help the restaurant evolve by introducing cocktails and breakfast options and by making more of the menu items from scratch.

“I’ve changed some of the recipes—it’s taken me 11 years, and I just changed the shepherd’s pie recipe,” Hendrix said. “If you’re not constantly evolving in some ways, that’s when you become obsolete and die off. There’s always somebody who’s doing something different and bigger and better, but you just have to get good at what you do and make little changes here and there.”

Despite the slow changes introduced over the years, Hendrix said the pub has never sacrificed the comfortable community atmosphere or the quality of its food, making homemade Irish mainstays from traditional recipes, like Dublin fish and chips, and pouring a pint of Guinness the right way.


“A lot of traditional Irish pubs in Ireland are very casual, local and community-based, and that’s what we specialize in,” Hendrix said. “A lot of people say we’re like ‘Cheers.’ It’s very common to just pop in and see five people you know, so we’re the hangout spot. You can get grub, food and beer anywhere, but this is where people come to socialize.”

Like most restaurants, McCreary’s was hit hard by the effects of the coronavirus pandemic, with Hendrix having to temporarily lay off staff and limit the pub’s hours and services. Over the course of the dining area closures, she said the Franklin community is what has allowed her to stay open, and once McCreary’s reopened its doors April 27, the 50% capacity of the small pub was quickly filled with customers.

“The community is the only reason we’ve been able to keep doing what we’re doing,” Hendrix said. “The second the news came that dining was going to be shut down, I had so many people reach out and ask how they could help. ... Everybody has been scrambling to help.”

Despite the hardships suffered from the coronavirus as well as the way competition has increased in downtown Franklin over the years, Hendrix said McCreary’s Irish Pub has continued to provide Irish beer and food to the community that has kept them going for nearly 20 years.

“We’ve watched Main Street grow over the years and [seen] the revitalization of the Franklin Theatre. I was here waiting tables when it was run-down and closing shop,” Hendrix said. “We’re still the little fish in a big pond, but we’re always still standing. There are restaurants every other door now, but we’re still kicking.”


MOST RECENT

The First Street Foundation's dataset includes a forecast models that anticipate the effects of climate change and sea level rise. (Screenshot via First Street Foundation)
Analysis: FEMA may be undercounting national total flood risk by as much as 70%

The new dataset includes an interactive Flood Factor dashboard that anyone can use to assess the risk of flooding over a 30-year period for any address.

Sunset Road
Sunset Road in Brentwood to close July 6 for paving

Residents who live nearby should plan to take alternate routes. 

Lee said he is calling on law enforcement agencies across the state to review and update use of force and duty to intervene policies in the next 60 days. (Courtesy Fotolia)
Gov. Bill Lee calls for ban on chokeholds across all police agencies in Tennessee

Law enforcement agencies statewide will have 60 days to review their policies to ban chokeholds and require duty-to-intervene policies for officers.

When interest rates are low, homeowners may look to save money by refinancing, which means getting a new mortgage with a better term or interest rate to lower payments. (Source: Matt Frankel/Community Impact Newspaper)
'Refinancing isn't free:' How to navigate refinancing a mortgage

When interest rates are low, homeowners may look to save money by refinancing, which means getting a new mortgage with a better term or interest rate to lower payments.

Houston-based Christian Brothers Automotive operates more than 200 locations across the United States. (Courtesy Christian Brothers Automotive)
Q&A: Christian Brothers Automotive CEO talks commercial real estate, essential business operations amid pandemic

The Houston-based automotive company has franchise locations throughout Texas, Georgia, Tennessee and Arizona.

Tennessee coronavirus cases rise by more than 1,500 in 24 hours

The number of new cases reported has risen by an average of more than 1,000 per day for the last five days.

The sweet shop will offer frozen yogurt and hand-dipped ice cream in a variety of flavors as well as treats from local Nashville-based businesses. (Courtesy Pexels)
Sweethaven to hold grand opening in Franklin's Westhaven community

The sweet shop will offer frozen yogurt and hand-dipped ice cream in a variety of flavors as well as treats from local Nashville-based businesses.

Drivers in Tennessee may notice some lane closures in place at long-term construction projects. (Courtesy Fotolia)
TDOT: No lane closures over Fourth of July weekend; I-440 fully reopens in Nashville

While drivers may notice some lane closures in place at long-term construction sites, TDOT announced July 2 that I-440 is now completely open one month ahead of schedule.

In communities across the nation, Walmart Supercenter parking lots will be transformed into contact-free, drive-in movie theaters beginning in August. (Courtesy Walmart)
Walmart to bring drive-in movies to 160 stores nationwide in August, launch virtual summer camp

Families can also enjoy a virtual summer camp experience Walmart is launching July 8 with sessions led by celebrities, including Drew Barrymore, Neil Patrick Harris and LeBron James.

Beginning July 3, Nashville will revert to a modified version of Phase 2 of economic reopening. (Alex Hosey/Community Impact Newspaper)
Nashville reverting to Phase 2 of economic reopening; Mayor John Cooper orders bars to close

As part of the modified reopening phase, bars will close for a minimum of 14 days, which public health officials said is equal to one incubation cycle of COVID-19.

When asked if they intend to send their child to school should in-person instruction resume, more than 64% of parents said they would, while only 3.1% said their children certainly would not attend in-person instruction. (Courtesy Pixabay)
Williamson County Schools releases return-to-school survey results

When asked if they intend to send their child to school should in-person instruction resume, more than 64% of parents said they would, while only 3.1% said their children certainly would not attend in-person instruction.

State health officials are urging residents to wear face coverings as case numbers continue to rise. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Tennessee Department of Health: ‘This is not the time to get back to normal’

Tennessee Department of Health Commissioner Dr. Lisa Piercey said more than half of all cases are from an unknown source, meaning residents are now more likely to become infected while out in public.