Fun and taste from home

Restaurant Guide
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Fun and taste from home

by: Jon Rabiroff | Stars and Stripes | December 12, 2012
Sam Ryan's Sports Bar & GrillCuisine: Pub
Hours: Tuesday: 16:00-24:00
Thursday: 16:00-24:00
Saturday: 16:00-24:00
: 16:00-24:00
: 10:30-24:00
Sunday: 10:30-24:00
South Korea
Phone: 02-749-7933

Many Americans living overseas seek out things that remind them of home, like their favorite TV show, food or people from their state.

For me, I had to find a good sports bar where I could go when I wanted to down a few beers, eat some unhealthy food and catch a game on TV.

I found all that and more at Sam Ryan's Sports Bar & Grill, which opened last year and soon became the place to go for expat sports fanatics in and around Seoul.

This is a sports bar in the truest sense, not one of those places that just happens to have the TV tuned to whatever game is on.

There are eight TVs that give patrons a good view from wherever they are in the spacious restaurant. The Sam Ryan's Web site is constantly updated with the games that will be featured each day. And, the staff welcomes suggestions if there is a soccer, rugby, basketball, football or hockey game you just have to see.

Important games are often shown live during the day and replayed at night. But be warned. If you want a seat, get there early on days and nights of the really big games -- Sam Ryan's was packed for the recent BCS Championship Game and the Super Bowl.

The food is a cut above the quality and quantity you would expect from a sports bar. There are the standard chicken wings and onion rings, but you will also find steaks, pork chops and seafood-stuffed mushroom caps on the menu. There is also a good selection of soups, salads and sandwiches.

Not all the competition at Sam Ryan's happens on television. The menu offers patrons the chance to eat free, but there's a catch. All you have to do is finish a 72-ounce ribeye steak, baby potatoes and a garden salad in less than an hour. If you don't meet the deadline -- or you suffer a heart attack before finishing -- you will be charged 75,000 won.

Not everyone has their eyes fixed on the TVs. There are dartboards. And, Sam Ryan's is also a good place for people-watching, either from a seat at the long, curving bar, or from one of the stools that face the large windows that allow visitors to scan the usually crowded alley below.

Know a restaurant or entertainment spot you'd like to see reviewed in After Hours? E-mail Karen Willenbrecht, Pacific After Hours editor, at

Sam Ryan's Sports Bar & Grill

Location: Itaewon, Seoul, South Korea

Hours: Monday-Friday, 4 p.m.-late; weekends, 10:30 a.m.-late

Prices: Appetizers, soups and salads are about 7,500 won; weekend brunch specials are 12,500 won; main course meals are 12,500 won and up; draft beer prices range from 2,500 to 7,500 won; bottled beer ranges from 3,500 to 7,500 won.

Specialty: "The Fiesty" -- a 72-ounce Australian ribeye steak, baby potatoes and garden salad. Eat it all in less than an hour, and it's free. Fail and it costs 75,000 won.

English menu: Yes

Dress: Casual

Clientele: Mostly expats

Directions: In the alley behind the Hamilton Hotel, above the 3 Alley Pub.

Know a restaurant or entertainment spot you'd like to see reviewed in After Hours? E-mail Karen Willenbrecht, Pacific After Hours editor, at