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Irish pub about to open in old Real Jerk space

Posted by Katlyn Jennings / August 12, 2012

An Sibin PubThe former home of the Real Jerk at Queen and Broadview is about to be the new home of The An Sibin Pub & Ceili House. Set to open its doors later this month, the gastropub promises to encompass both authentic and new-age Irish traditions, or Irish-fusion so to speak.

Earlier this week I met up for a tour of the under-construction space with co-owner Scott Brockington who used to manage Quinn's Steakhouse. He has lead me around the building and talked to me about what they have planned for the new venture. Gone is the iconic ray of sun on the west-facing wall, and the red and yellow exterior is now simply yellow.

Beer lovers should take note that the An Sibin Pub will have 20 Irish and craft beers on tap as well as host regular cask nights featuring many Ontario Craft Brewers. Behind the bar will be plenty of whisky (whisky tastings will be a recurring feature) and locals or whoever shows up will be able to get their fill until 2am, 7 days a week. That means plenty of options for those who are looking for a bit of Irish variety from the Roy and Ceili Cottage a little further east.

Construction is the name of the game at the moment and some notable additions include a private, rentable room called The Plank as well as The Over-look Bar suitably located upstairs over-looking the main space. Also worth noting is something they're referring to as Room 237: a space, according to Brockington, that is reminiscent of an old-school Irish snug, or, a private area meant specifically for women. The room will up the pretty and feature a chandelier as well as an intimate dining area.

Food wise, Irish inspired pub fare such as Kilkenny battered shrimp and Guinness stew will be on the menu. Apart from pints and tasty grub, live music will dominate Wednesday through Sunday evenings.



irish / August 12, 2012 at 05:08 am
an irish pub. that's exciting.
Foghorn O'Kalashnikov / August 12, 2012 at 07:38 am
Yawwn, guinness stew and beer battered shrimp, so this is just an east side Finn McCool's then. Well who wouldn't trust guys called Aulier and Brockington to provide an "authentic" Irish experience! Oh well, good luck I suppose.
w-hat / August 12, 2012 at 10:01 am
These guys are paying attention. Everyone knows you're supposed to open a Mexican place.
Ben / August 12, 2012 at 12:10 pm
Boradview and Queen already has a gastropub, whatever the hell that is. Sounds like it would be a hit with 30-something ex-fratboys.
James replying to a comment from Foghorn O'Kalashnikov / August 12, 2012 at 12:13 pm
What an idiotic comment. Having an Irish last name or not proves zero. For all you know their mothers are both full blooded Irish and they were born in Dublin. Michael Fassbender has a German last name, Irish mother and was raised in Ireland since he was two years old. But I'm sure you think Shaquille O'Neal is more Irish.
Foghorn O'Kalashnikov replying to a comment from James / August 12, 2012 at 12:27 pm
Yeah, stranger things have happened. If any of the dropdown links on their site worked I suppose we could tell. Whatever the owners' pedigree I am Irish born and raised (so not the target market, I know I know) and kinda over places like this serving up the same tired chain-Irish-pub-in-North-America stews and boxties and then using the word "authentic", especially down the road from me. I am interested in what "new age Irish" is supposed to mean though, can anyone expand? Regardless good luck to em, hope they succeed and the landlord likes them better than TRJ and I will drop in to check the place out.
kstop replying to a comment from Foghorn O'Kalashnikov / August 12, 2012 at 01:35 pm
Looks like he previously worked at PJ O'Briens, which is pretty much a real Irish pub masquerading as a fake one, so there might be hope.

(Also Irish, also not a fan of Finn McCools and its ilk.)
Lisa / August 12, 2012 at 02:56 pm
Rather than continuing with a negative rant, I'm very excited there will be a new Irish pub in the hood. I'm moving into 90 Broadview within a couple months time and look forward to trying out all the resto's and seeing how the neighbourhood will continue to evolve. Glad you'll be a part of it.
Jimmy Smack / August 12, 2012 at 03:46 pm
"Son, I remember a day when there were places to eat and drink other than Starbucks and Firkin-alikes. That was before Skynet went into the food business..."
Jmy / August 12, 2012 at 04:00 pm
I live in the neighborhood. It would be nice if we got anything OTHER than Gastropubs and Cupcake-shops. Just saying.
cosmosuave / August 12, 2012 at 04:48 pm
So that will be 3 gastro pubs within a 100m of each other... This place, Prohibition, and Riverside Public House... How original...
Eoghan Ennis / August 12, 2012 at 05:14 pm
I used to work for Brockington - hes about as Irish as I am Pakistani - but really, who cares?

Truth is, there MIGHT be two legit Irish Pubs in the whole city.

The North American trend of 'Lets throw a clover on the wall, Guinness on tap and have the servers wear kilts' makes people money. That's why you can throw a stick in the air and hit one of these (admittedly tired) pseudo-Irish pubs.

If anyone tried to open a LEGIT Irish pub here like my local back in Belfast, it would be shut down within a month. Real Irish pubs don't offer things like friendly service (sorry, no bartender with a giant smile behind the bar, pouring pint after pint of Guinness) a thirty page menu (many pubs don't even offer food) or Spirit Of The West and Great Big Sea playing 24/7. (Thank goodness.) Yer lucky if ya get a 'Whaddaya want?' from the bartender.

Anyways, I wish them the best of luck.
plens / August 12, 2012 at 05:23 pm
The strippers from Jilly's across the street can 'ave a pint or two after the show!
Riverside motherfucker replying to a comment from cosmosuave / August 12, 2012 at 07:58 pm
Wow you are dumb. At first I was like what the f is a gastropub. So I googled. It's a restaurant the serves high end beer and high end food. How could you possibly have a problem with that? And in what way is it unoriginal. That's like saying wearing a jacket when it's cold out is unoriginal. A great idea is a great idea.
Scott / August 12, 2012 at 08:19 pm
I just want to clear up a couple of things up in the article. Firstly, we are called An Sibín Pub. Not to get confused with Shucker Paddy McMurray's great pub in Leslieville (The Céilí Cottage),we are not a Céilí House, but rather The House Ceol. Ceol being Gaelic for Music, we look to offer live music (Not just Irish) Thursday-Saturday, and will look to add Céilí sessions, Fiddlers, or solo Traditional on Wednesday evenings and possibly Sunday late afternoons. An Sibín is Gaelic for The Shebeen, which is an illegal drinking establishment and/or shady bar. These were rampant in Ireland and real Shebeen's still can be found in South Africa...who knew?

The little room in the Overlook Bar will be called Snug 217. If you recall the evil room in the Overlook Hotel is room 217.

We aren't cooking all typical Pub Fare like Fionn McCools, but you will be guaranteed to see an Irish Stew, a Chicken Curry, lots of potatoes and root vegetables on the menu. Our Chef Tim Pettigrew will be playing around with specials so nothing is concrete. And I too am not the biggest fan of the term Gastro, but when you allow for your Chef to be creative rather than mundane, what else would you call it? Damn good Irish Pub Fare with a twist?

We will offering 17 beers on tap that are Irish & Craft only, plus 1 cider. A focus will also be on Irish Whiskey, as we will have 21 to begin.

We may not be Irish, but our experience comes from many Irish Pubs in Toronto. Most notably working for the Quinn Family at The Irish Embassy Pub, P.J. O'Brien's and Quinn's Steakhouse & Irish Bar. We have a soft spot for the Irish and its community and the feeling has been mutual over the last number of years. We have hosted and attended many Irish Events, Luncheons, and GAA Events. Also have employed many Irish in our pubs, heck I even have a 1 year old son with one I stole from Galway! 6 of our Barmen and Barmaids are also from Ireland.

Rick and I aren't just opening an Irish Pub, we are opening a pub for the Irish, for Riverside and for ourselves to be proud of. Also of note, An Sibín is the house the Irish built, if you consider the 5 Carpenters, 2 Electricians, 2 Tilers, the Painter/Stainer and the Jack-of-all trademen are all Irish. Rick and I have been the only Canadian's in the pub since we open the door on June 1st.

Our website will be ready for a good look by next weekend. So hopefully rather than negative thoughts, you will come to our home and enjoy some great Hospitality, of which we learned from Pat & Anne Quinn, and their entire Quinn family.

Come see ua at The Shebeen and have a big of fun with us.
Jerk / August 12, 2012 at 08:53 pm
Where did the Real Jerk move to?
Eoghan Ennis replying to a comment from Riverside motherfucker / August 12, 2012 at 09:09 pm
Agreed. Its just the privileged neighborhood hipsters think another coffee shop/vintage clothing store/organic-ground-up-unicorn-cupcake shop all with WI-fi is a good thing. You already have half the city. Leave the east end out of it. This is not a bad thing for the city.
Firkin McGee replying to a comment from Eoghan Ennis / August 12, 2012 at 09:44 pm
I quit reading when I noticed the word "hipster." #commentfail
Eoghan Ennis replying to a comment from Firkin McGee / August 12, 2012 at 10:58 pm
Wow. The use of 'fail' and a hashtag reference. You obviously own a pair of non-prescription glasses.
Jesse / August 12, 2012 at 11:16 pm
Toronto is full of "haters" 99% of whom will contribute nothing to this city other than their bad energy. Time to grow up, get off the couch, stop moaning and actually make a difference.
Simon Tarses replying to a comment from Jimmy Smack / August 13, 2012 at 12:21 am
Jimmy, I love you, and your comment-you are so right about that, and what happened to The Real Jerk. The silly white people living in this town and at the corner of Queen & Broadview have no idea what they've lost, it's shocking. Yet another Irish pub-and I thought that Toronto was supposed to be a diverse multicultural metropolis. What the frack's happening?
evan / August 13, 2012 at 01:34 am
Great comment from the owner. It's a touchy location but places come and go and life goes on. Sounds like they've got a fairly unique angle for that area. Should be a good place to grab a pint before seeing something at the opera house.
John / August 13, 2012 at 08:44 am
So, The Real Jerk was given short notice to vacate their location of 28 years to make way for another pub? No disrespect to the new tenants but why would one bar be booted out for another?
Limerick replying to a comment from Scott / August 13, 2012 at 09:35 am
Irish born, moved to Toronto 15 years ago, now living at the Broadview Lofts, down the street.

Looking forward to seeing what the An Sibin has to offer. Why people are so quick to judge is beyond me.

Give it a chance. See what it has to offer and if you dont like it then, the fair play to you.

Opening a pub/restaurant is never easy, regardless if its Irish, a dance club, etc.

They deserve a chance as much as anyone else who opens something, that they hope has a different twist on an old idea.

Good luck boys.
Not Irish but like em / August 13, 2012 at 01:45 pm
Give them a chance - geez, agree with Jesse about a lot of Toronto people who spend all their time at work and sitting in front of the TV at night. Sad lot they are.
Sarah replying to a comment from Scott / August 13, 2012 at 05:28 pm
YAHOO! I love living in the East End!
I live about a block from the Ceili - so that will remain my local, but I've already been to check out the Riverside Public House twice (totally worth many more return visits) and will definitely hit up this new pub as well :)
More and more reasons not to bother heading downtown for a good time.
Good luck to you!
Arrow / August 14, 2012 at 09:50 am
What's the story behind Real Jerk being kicked out again? I thought they'd be building condos or something here.
Redheadednomad / August 14, 2012 at 02:17 pm
So, what happened to the land sale for Condo development that supposedly uprooted The Real Jerk?

Agree with Eoghan Ennis - doesn't look/sound like any actual Irish (or Scottish) pub I've ever visited. The massive 'Guinness' decal on the window suggests Diageo have had some influence; would be interested to see what that's done to the beer list.

All in all, I'm glad to see it's not become yet another condo development, but it will be interesting to see if this place makes an effort to stand out from all catering-to-yuppies/hipsters "Irish" pubs in the downtown core.
douglas g / August 15, 2012 at 04:52 pm
who cares about the real jerk? it wasn't an authentic jamaican place
Ratpick / August 18, 2012 at 02:12 pm
East Side Mary O''s
Dion replying to a comment from Scott / August 19, 2012 at 01:03 am
"if you consider the 5 Carpenters, 2 Electricians, 2 Tilers, the Painter/Stainer and the Jack-of-all trademen are all Irish. Rick and I have been the only Canadian's in the pub since we open the door on June 1st."

How did that happen? Did you turn tradesmen away if they weren't Irish? Just white people? Not a single black guy applied? Or a Portuguese guy? Not one? Really?
damo replying to a comment from Dion / September 4, 2012 at 01:37 pm
what a silly reposnse from Dion. The owner was trying to highlight that although they may not be Irish, they have worked in Irish bars and know what makes them work. By bringing in Irish staff and having Irish workers doing the construction, he is giving back to the Irish community, and it adds authenticity to the project, as they know how it should be built. I wouldn't have thought the Real Jerk would have had many non Caribbean staff working in it for the very same reason.
Patrick / September 4, 2012 at 01:45 pm
Wow! I can't believe how many negative d-bags there are out there. Get a life.

Welcome to the neighbourhood Scott and the crew of the An Sibín!
John / September 5, 2012 at 02:22 am
I was just at the An Sibin Pub located at 709 Queen Street East (which replaced The Real Jerk) with my girlfriend to eat and I don't know if i should say the service was fine at the beginning or if it was terrible as the waitress did take our order 5 mins after we sat down but is it normal for our order of 1 sheppard's pie to take literally 40 mins when there are only 2 tables being served? My patience was already thin by then... So at the end of the meal we asked for the bill and the waitress confirmed by saying "yes" as she was taking away our food.. 15 mins go by and nothing.. we wanted to believe in their service so we waited for anyone to come by with the bill.. the table far behind us gets their bill taken and the customers leave while we are still waiting for ours by the same waitress who was supposed to get our bill.. So my girlfriend waves her hand to the waitress while i turn around to see her chatting it up and laughing with the chef clearly looking our way.. she continues to chat it up with the chef while our hands were up waving left and right and she looks our way and back to the chef and then our way and back to the chef then continues on chatting with the chef ignoring us many times.. So as pissed as we are we go up to the counter to pay the bill and the waitress, the who who was chatting it up decides to disappear into the back somewhere.. we wondered why? So we left too pissed to think clearly and came back 10 mins later to realize that they had ripped us off.. The waitress who disappeared and ignored us decided to charge us for a pint of beer i never drank... I clearly stated to her that i did not want a drink at the time and i clearly never got a drink.. What makes me even more mad is that i am sure she knew, hence why she totally ignored us and vanished when we came up to pay for the bill ourselves. We had to pay through the bartender and there was actually another waitress there doing nothing, god knows why she never saw us either? the place is not big.. if you turned you head left sitting at the bar you could see everyone.

We speak with the manager and surprise.. he didn't even apologize to us.. in fact his attitude towards us was terrible. This is basically what he tried to do in a short sense of thing.. "F**k off and take your money back" without directly saying it... So he decides to refund us our money back by slapping a buncha fives on the table and expects us to take it and leave (btw the refund was only for the pie and not even for the wine we got!)... so we told him we don't care about the money (who would when being treated like that?) , we just wanted the receipt back and so he mutters "ill have to dig it from the garbage" in a really offense tone/manner and disappears and comes back in a couple minutes and you know he does? he tries to scam us again by giving us a brand new receipt and this one doesn't even include the wine we bought.. We clearly asked for the one they overcharged us on... So we got the receipts and leave as pissed as we are now. He Never said sorry or apologize to us and would only admit it was a mistake but at the same hand say he was right with some excuse..

Terrible Service - Check
Over priced - Check
Horrible Management - Check
Mediocre Food - Check
Gord / October 21, 2012 at 07:00 pm
The write up hat starts this review of the An Sibin pub.
says that it has whisky that's Scotch whisky.
Even my spell checker doesn't like whisky
Irish whiskey is correct. Possibly could edit the article
Roti Lover / November 21, 2012 at 12:17 pm
I'm so confused. The Real Jerk was AMAZING!!! So so sad to see it go. Don't care about ANOTHER Irish pub in Toronto. We need more roties.

Where is the Real Jerk re-opening? It better be in the neighbourhood or we're all going to be very pissed.
Madison / December 1, 2012 at 11:18 pm
They don't care about their neighbors. The level of noise is outrageous on a nightly basis. Bad service bad staff horribly ignorant management. Don't go here the music sucks ass too.
queen st e neighbor replying to a comment from Madison / December 2, 2012 at 01:12 am
just filed yet another noise complaint against them. i live pretty much across the street and refuse to go there because of the complete disrespect they show their neighbors with the noise levels. not just the music, but on more than one occasion there have been over-served patrons FIGHTING loudly outside of the pub.
Madison replying to a comment from queen st e neighbor / December 2, 2012 at 01:34 am
I agree. Email me to discuss if you are interested in contacting councillor Paula Fletcher on this.
Madison replying to a comment from queen st e neighbor / December 2, 2012 at 01:36 am
Maxine / March 8, 2013 at 11:50 am
The real Jerks food did not even taste like athentic Jamacian food they were slacking of when it came to customer service.
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John / May 4, 2013 at 02:16 am
I think it's pretty awesome that this place is still around and is a bit hit in the Irish community. The host the annual GAA awards and all the Irish I work with regularly go there. It turns out that we didn't need another vintage clothing / bicycle repair / organic coffee / locally sourced brunch shop.
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