The 11th letter of the alphabet has presence. According to comedian Mel Brooks, words with "k" elicit humor. (One of his comedy tips, for instance, was to use a word such as "turkey" instead of "salmon.") In Neil Simon's play "The Sunshine Boys," Willy tells his nephew: "Fifty-seven years in this business, you learn a few things. You know what words are funny and which words are not funny. Alka Seltzer is funny. You say 'Alka Seltzer,' you get a laugh ... Words with 'k' in them are funny." And then there's that reality television family whose names all begin with "k."
Which all points to a quiet genius in the naming of Karakters Sports Bar and Grill, which has replaced O'Briens in Coram.
The pub, across Route 112 from the town's Home Depot, has the classic sports bar combo of flat-screen televisions (35), beer taps (16) and pub fare such as wings, fries, flatbreads, burgers and sandwiches.
Karakters opened in late October after a full renovation of O'Briens by owners Al Dumancela and Michelle and Sal Cusumano. Besides two pool tables, manager Jackie Monaco said entertainment will eventually include theme nights.
Karakters' taps are a blend of big-name and craft brews. Besides hearty entrees such as shepherds pie ($16) and baby back ribs ($14 half-rack, $23 whole rack), other menu standouts include poutine-like fries ($9); a Greek-style flatbread topped with feta, mozzarella, Kalamata olives, arugula and lemon vinaigrette ($12); roasted eggplant panini ($14) stuffed with vegetables and cheese; and a fried Oreo dessert drizzled with chocolate sauce ($7.50).
Karakters is open daily for lunch and dinner, staying open 'til 1 a.m. Sunday to Thursday and 2 a.m. Friday and Saturday.
Karakters Sports Bar and Grill, 3720 Route 112, Coram; 631-880-7355, karakterssportsbarandgrill.com.