While many students are pretty familiar with downtown Bloomington around 11:30 on Friday or Saturday nights, there are definitely some places downtown that deserve to be visited, even in the light of day. Rosie’s Pub is one of them.
The first time I went to Rosie’s, it was to get a couple drinks while a friend and I waited for a table to open up in a busy nearby restaurant. Right away I liked the place. It was warm, dark, cozy, and had a rustic feel that made us feel relaxed. There is a dark wooden bar that goes across the length of the room with small tables and benches to sit down at across from the bar. One detail that stood out to us was their mannequin named Rosie who sits on top of a ledge looking over the whole place; they even change her outfits.
We had such a good time sitting at the bar talking with the (super good looking) bartenders, ordering delicious drinks that were really cheap, and we even had someone come up to us and buy our drinks because they wanted to pay it forward. After spending a half hour there, we wanted to just stay there and eat but instead we made plans to come back. A couple months later, we finally got around to actually sitting down and eating there. We went on a Tuesday around 5 p.m., definitely a different scene than our previous Saturday night at 8 p.m.
However, Rosie’s was still pretty busy for a weekday and was filling up for dinner by the time we left. We were seated right away and led to a back dining room that we didn’t even realize existed - it almost doubled the size of the bar room area.
We started with loaded fries to share, a between the four of us there was plenty of food to go around. We ordered a Margherita flatbread, Gouda Burger, Spicy Pina Burger and a Buffalo Shrimp Caesar salad. All of our food tasted amazing and we had no complaints about the service at all.
The only negative was that the prices were all over the place. Most of the menu items were extremely cheap: I got a huge burger and fries for under $9. However, there were other menu items that were $20-$30. Rosie’s has options for however simple or fancy you’re wanting to go.
Overall, I would describe Rosie’s as a relaxed, semi-hipster place. Most of the people working are college aged and are really friendly. It’s open until 2 a.m. on weekends, so I highly recommend stopping there first instead of going the usual Mulligans or Chasers route. Rosie’s is a hidden gem that I’m pretty sure many ISU students aren’t aware of, but definitely worth experiencing.