|Photo via Eater.|
The problem is not that Trick Dog and bars of that ilk exist - God bless 'em, they're popular, so there's obviously a reason they exist - but that now they're the ONLY kind of bars that open. This is the only concept now. Fancy cocktails and small inexplicable plates of food have crowded everything else out.
And then that made me think - well, what would you want in a bar? What's the ideal bar? OK, here you go.
There are about 18 excellent beers on tap. No macros on tap. There are Bud and Miller longnecks because this is America. There is no Coors Light of any kind available.
There is no drinks menu. The bartender knows how to make normal drinks. There is a nice selection of bourbon, scotch, whiskey, tequila, and other spirits. There is no muddling. If you ask for a mojito, the bartender will smile gently and say, "I'm sorry, we don't make mojitos." That's if you're a girl. If you're a guy and you ask for a mojito, the bartender will not say anything but will gently shake his head "no." No frozen blended drinks are offered.
There is one TV. It is usually off, unless you ask to turn it on for a Giants or 49ers game. Then it will be turned on with the sound off.
There is a regular, old-style jukebox, not an Internet jukebox. The jukebox is stocked either by one of the staff or someone else with excellent taste in music. You can find the Zombies, the Commodores, the Rolling Stones' "Exile on Main Street," Tupac's "Me Against the World," the Strokes, Lefty Frizzell, and much more.
There are cups of dice behind the bar. There is no neon inside the bar, anywhere.
There is still a working payphone in the alcove between the men's and ladies' rooms.
There are some regulars, but they are not the kind of regulars who get drunk and super loud and take over the bar and then the bartender spends the whole night hanging out at the end of the bar with them and ignoring the other customers.
The bartender makes the best old-fashioned you've ever had. The bloody mary comes garnished with a fresh stick of celery and nothing else. It is also delicious.
There is no food prepared onsite. It's fine to bring in food occasionally, as long as it doesn't fill the bar with food smell and you don't make a habit of it. This is a bar, not a restaurant or a picnic area.
Large groups of loud, drunk people may find that it takes increasingly long waits to get their drinks refreshed.
This is the perfect place to spend a few hours on a Sunday afternoon.