W.J. McBride's Irish Pub 12030 Blue Valley Pkwy. 913-451-3100
No one driving by would guess that this bit o' Ireland in a Johnson County strip center would serve one of the best cheeseburgers in town (a half pound of beef topped with melted cheddar and crisp bacon). Not to mention steamed mussels in a broth of Guinness and garlic, a hearty Reuben sandwich (it's called an "Ellis Island" here, for a more multiethnic flavor) and a strip steak marinated in Irish ale and herbs. W.J. McBride's interior isn'tblarney -- the antique stained glass, dark woodwork and memorabilia were imported from the Old Country. The pub's menu straddles the line between traditional Irish fare (superb corned beef and cabbage, "boxty" dinners served on potato pancakes, a rib-sticking shepherd's pie) and modern bar food. That means burgers and salads, fried chicken fingers and cheesecake with strawberry sauce. And while the servers don't look like Maureen O'Hara, they've got her spunk.