Back in the ’90s it seemed like you couldn’t walk 10 feet without stumbling into a casual chain restaurant with a bar, each of which fighting for your happy hour business. You know the places — TGI Fridays, Bennigan’s, Applebee’s and any number of other spots that went around masquerading as the local town pub but in actuality were just homogenized, monster-sized, corporate-owned money machines that tried to fool you into thinking they were folksy by hanging a few crooked knick-knacks on the wall and maybe a high school letterman jacket.

But there is one spot in Galloway that some might assume is part of this club, but in actuality is the real deal, right down to the knick-knacks. That place is a locally owned watering hole in Galloway by the name of W.L. Goodfellows.

Goodfellows is a massive space located on the eastbound side of Route 30. I popped in on a Thursday evening to check out the scene.

While the restaurant portion was not what you would call “filled,” the bar area was a different story. I actually had to look around in order to find myself a seat. The bartender on staff was the kind of quick witted, sassy chick you would see in a TV show, rolling with the punches from the often vocal crowd of locals, many of which took great delight in busting her chops. Luckily she could dish it out as well as any of them, which made for a fun, lively scene.

A word of caution about Goodfellows: the menu here has a page count that could rival a phone book. Because of this it is easy to find something you like, then completely forget what it was as you move on from page to page. This goes for both drinks and food. This menu is a force to be reckoned with.

Of course, all those options can be fun to explore, as they offer a dozen taps to pick from in addition to many bottled beers and a dizzying amount of cocktails. The night I visited they were offering house margaritas in a 32-ounce mason jar for just $6. Now I am usually the first one to complain about a margarita that uses sour mix and cuts corners, but for the price, this was a damn steal even if it wasn’t the truest form of the drink ever created.

I order a few items to munch on — some crab rangoon spring rolls and a chicken club sandwich, both of which were excellent. Most times, anything that says “crab rangoon” actually contains no crab meat of any kind, but this app actually did. It was loaded with crabby goodness and cream cheese. A great start.

The chicken club was tasty as well, served on a long roll with lettuce, tomato, bacon and cheese with just the right amount of mayo.

I planned to have a few more drinks (they have an incredible list of frozen dessert type cocktails that I have sampled in prior visits), but after that massive margarita I had to call it a night. I left satisfied.

So next time somebody in your group is banging the drum for a trip to Ruby Tuesday’s, steer ’em toward Goodfellows instead. They will thank you.

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