Happy Hour

Dive Bar Tuesday – Diplomat Lounge

After an extended hiatus, we are back! Of course, that is one of the best things about any good dive bar you go to. Any bar, really. They become more than a place to just get a drink after work; you get to know the bartenders. You start to discover that other patrons are from a town near yours, or enjoy Game of Thrones as much as you do, or weep quietly every Sunday after a Browns loss. Whether you go to the best wine bar in town or a venue where their craft beer is Budweiser Lime-A-Rita, you are going for more than the product they are offering. You are going for the comfortable feeling it … [Read more...]

Dive Bar Tuesday: McGillicutty’s Pub

When the biggest bar holiday of the year comes knocking, you sit down with your team and have a serious conversation about the bar where you are going to celebrate. A lively discussion commenced and the finalists were chosen. The finalists all had certain merits in the dive bar designation. The Final Four bars we decided on were Flannigan's Pub, Harrigan's Tavern, Mack's Tavern, and McGillicutty's Pub. We look forward to visiting all of them in good time, but the one we went for this week just ahead of St. Patrick's Day was McGillicutty's Pub. It has been a staple in the community for over … [Read more...]

Dive Bar Tuesday: Time Out Cavern

  There are many criteria on which you can judge a bar. Some people look for a certain selection of liquor, focusing on bourbon or wine or craft beer. Others go because of loyalty; your friend owns it, or bartends there, or they support a certain team you like. There is something to be said for the talent that they have hired. Finding the lady who makes your Manhattan with just the right amount of sweetness, or the gentleman who has a glass of wine poured and waiting for you at your favorite seat, is worth its weight in Pappy Van Winkle. All of these things are lovely, but the … [Read more...]

Dive Bar Tuesday – Sure Shots

We love to get excited about things becoming bigger and better. We watch the places that follow all the trends, trying desperately to either keep up with them or get ahead of what they are doing. More craft beers, larger cocktail menus, more and more food options. All of it in the name of trying to attract more customers. That may be the expected thing to do when you own a bar or restaurant, but it is not always the right thing. Occasionally the right thing is to be the solid rock in a sea of changing tastes. Sure Shots has been following this path for as long as I have been stopping in, and … [Read more...]

Dive Bar Tuesday – Phone Booth Lounge

Since the team started working on Dive Bar Tuesdays, one bar has been at the top of our list to get to sooner than later. It is one that we all discovered while working together and we had been attending for a while. The location was relatively central to where we all lived, the food and drink prices were right, and the atmosphere was incredibly relaxed. Schedules did not align, especially since on Tuesday nights the bar was packed. Packed to the point people were making reservations. Reservations? In a dive bar? When Tuesday Night Trivia is so popular that majority of the tables in the place … [Read more...]

Dive Bar Tuesday: Dog’s Breath Tavern

Last week was cold. And snowy. So when we were looking for a dive bar to visit, we wanted something relatively central. There are many in the area that we have been to, but one I had always been curious about but had not explored. Well, not since I moved to the great city of Dayton, and it was better known as Alan’s Billiard’s and Brew. When it was Alan’s, I remember pool tables as far as the eye could see and beer that was exactly what beer should be: inexpensive and cold. I don’t remember much in the way of food, but who needed it? It would just ruin the flow of beer and pool. Bits and … [Read more...]

Dive Bar Tuesday: Miami Valley Sports Bar

We love to talk about the crafted, well built side of the culinary world: fine dining, well balanced cocktails, and hand crafted beers. What we don’t discuss very often is the other side of the coin. The places where the food is comfortable, the shots are full, and the beer is cheap. Dive bars do not get the love that fine dining gets, and there is no good reason for it. There is a certain charm to loud and dimly lit places. You have some control of the music. They are a little more willing to serve one more (heavily poured) drink after last call. They have character, and there is nothing … [Read more...]

Cocktails with Champagne: A New Way to Ring in a New Year

No one appreciates champagne like they used to. The bubbly wine was created, accidentally, in England in the 16th century. The process was developed over the next two centuries, first to get the bubbles on a regular basis, then to create a bottle with the strength to contain the pressure of the carbon dioxide in the wine. Once the bottles stopped exploding, this treat became a favorite in the French courts. The French leaned to the sweeter sec and demi-sec varieties, while the English preferred the drier bruts. The wealthy were the only people that could afford it initially, turning it into a … [Read more...]

Cocktail Recipes to Celebrate Cinco De Mayo!

Cinco de Mayo is a Mexican holiday that celebrates Mexico's victory over the French at the Battle of Puebla.  But  for many of us  it is a great excuse for a day of patio drinking! And since we are drinking in honor of Mexico, it only seems right that we should feature some drinks made from the blue agave plant, a spiky-leafed member of the lily family. By Mexican law the agave spirit called Tequila can be made only from one particular type of agave, the blue agave, and can be produced only in specifically designated geographic areas, primarily the state of Jalisco in west-central … [Read more...]

Sip & Stroll – Coming Soon To Outdoor Drinking Districts

Grab a beer and head outside. Well, not yet. But soon. Maybe. It depends on where you are. State lawmakers gave final approval Wednesday to legislation that would allow outdoor alcohol consumption in areas such as The Oregon District, The Greene or Austin Landing. Governor Kasich signed House Bill 47 yesterday making it effective now,  allowing more than 60 Ohio cities with a population greater than 35,000 people to create 'outdoor refreshment areas' that are exempt from the state's open-container laws. The legislation designates that these entertainment area's are limited to a half … [Read more...]