Thursday, September 08, 2005

Number 777 At F.R. Woody's Pub

I will soon be hitting Bar Number 777 on September 12th up in Northern Minnesota in Ranier, the sprawling suburb of International Falls, and within a stone's throw of Canada. I will probably get in trouble for saying that, Ranier is a city and is not, I repeat, is not, a suburb of International Falls.

The bar will be F. R. Woody's Pub.

F.R. Woody's Pub is owned by a good friend of mine, Barry Woods (the one on the left).

It should be a rousing good time. Woody is also the proprietor of the notorious Woody's Fairly Reliable Guide Service. For more information about his operation simply click below.

  • F.R Woody's Pub is right on the shore of beautiful Rainy Lake and there is a large outdoor deck as well as a smaller indoor area to accomodate the festivities.

    Wednesday, September 07, 2005

    Bar Number 515, Er, No, That’s Not Right

    I headed back to where I was yesterday to take the pictures that I missed because I forgot to put the video card in my camera. While there I dropped into I spot that I had seen (could hardly miss it) for a quick one.

    775) Bar 515

    Right next door to Joshua Tree is the similar in dimensions Bar 515. It has an old wooden bar with a dark square metal bar rail and dark wood bar chairs. There are two silver beer stations on the bar with ten spigots each and a bucket of Samuel Adams Boston Lager on ice between. Most of the walls, including the one behind the bar, are distressed brick. There is a metal “Bar 515” sign illuminated in red behind the bar along with tiered shelves of liquor. Two blackboards, one on each sign, announce the daily specials. Today was Frozen Margarita day so for $4.00 each you could get one in a wide variety of flavors. There is a nice flat screen television mounted above each end of the bar and at least four others that I could see from my perch at the bar. Another blackboard advertised that they show all NFL games.

    I chatted with the bartender, Eva, for a bit. She had just started there and didn’t know too much about bars in the area so I provided her with the benefit of my expertise. She was quite friendly so she should do very well.

    Eva, The Friendly Bartender

    Against the far back wall is a waterfall cascading down a brick wall. A good sized oval bar is in the back room and booths line the walls. There is a fairly elaborate lighting and sound system installed and I was told that was for when the DJs showed up. I imagine it gets quite lively then.

    Opposite the bar is a row of tables and chairs against a multi-colored wall with fragments of the word “Bar” and “515” making up a montage of sorts. The floor is wood planking and the ceiling is patterned tile. A couple of tables under umbrellas sit on the sidewalk in front of the open floor to ceiling windows next to the door.

    Measurements were being taken of the shelves behind the bar so I am wondering if they are planning on installing large screen projection televisions to compete with next door. I will have to check back later in the football season to see if my hunch is correct.

    I had a bottle of Samuel Adams Boston Lager, right out of the bucket and only $3.00.

    Well, that was just one for the day but it brings my total to 775 for the year leaving but 225 to go. My next bar will either be in JFK before I fly out to Minnesota or after I arrive in International Falls. At any rate, I won't be posting until I get to Minnesota but will certainly put up an entry after my Bar Number 777 party at F.R. Woody's Pub so be sure to look for that one.

    Until I post again, have a cold one.

    Tuesday, September 06, 2005

    A Place Revisited, Kind Of

    I took the subway up to 33rd because I wanted to visit a bar that I had heard about but had somehow missed, Joshua Tree. As I headed over there I saw, to my surprise, a new Caliente Cab Co. It was located where the Back Porch had been. This is now the second time on my trek that the same location has changed hands and I have been able to count it twice. As you may gather, if you recall my write-up on the Back Porch, I was not too disappointed to see it go:

    “What I was not impressed by was paying $10.00 for their house margarita straight-up. Not worth it at all. Can't even imagine what they charge for their 42 ounce frozen margaritas. Anyway, not a place that I would ever return. Couldn't even taste the tequila.”

    I feel somehow justified in my review and, obviously, I never will return.

    773) Caliente Cab Co.

    This is the newer “midtown” (corner of 33rd Street and 3rd Avenue) location of the Village establishment. Smaller, louder, and a bit classier looking. It has only been around for a month (see above). The bar has a shiny red top and a black, kind of bamboo-like front. The square bar stools have black cloth seats and there is a square dark metal bar rail. The bar back is quite colorful with interlocking I-shaped shelves that have alternating orange and yellow plastic backing that is lit from behind. The shelf below them matches the bar top and six wavy glass cylinders holding brightly colored liquids sit on top. The cylinders have spigots on the bottom but the bartender said they were for decorative purposes only. If this was a Russian bar there would be some kind of vodka in them, I am sure of that. A small overhang above half of the area behind the bar has a narrow bamboo look to it. Small candles sit on the bar.

    The two walls that don’t have large windows have small blue and turquoise tiles arranged in a nice pattern. The other two walls have large windows that look out on a nice seating area behind low brick planters. One of the nicer sidewalk seating areas. There are nice orange benches with orange striped backs along the 3rd Avenue side and in front of them are small low black tables and woven, basket-like stools with dark purple seats. This area is up a few steps and somewhat separated from the bar by black ironwork. Above this area are bare clear bulbs hanging from the ceiling above what looks like limbless tree branches also suspended from the ceiling.

    Immediately opposite the bar are three booths with bright red tables and benches with deep blue seats and backs with the same orange striped pattern as the ones by the window. The tree branch motif is carried through by what looks like a little fence-like “thing” that separates the booths from the tables on the other side. The tables over there have dark blue tops. Against the 33rd Street windows and up a few step is another row of tables and above them are square tin lights with punched out designs. The internal walls and columns are a soft yellow and the ceiling is a combination of yellow plaster, dark wood, and narrow bamboo that is the same as the overhang above the bar. A nicely designed place worth a look.

    I had a Negro Modelo with a slice of lime stuffed into it.

    774) Joshua Tree

    Just across the street and up a block at 513 3rd Avenue is this fairly large place. It is somewhat narrow, as are most bars in New York City, but fairly deep. In fact there is a second bar in the back room that looks like an only somewhat smaller version of the one up front. The one in front is dark wood with beat-up wooden chairs and a brass rail. A large silver beer station with 24 spigots sits on top. Two large projection television screens separated by a large mirror with a large etched Joshua Tree long in gold is behind the bar. Tiered shelve below hold a large assortment of liquor. Over the bar hang swollen glass tube lights in assorted pastel colors; blue, green, yellow, and red. The ceiling they hang from is a silver, ornately patterned tin or faux-tin tile.

    I chatted with the bartender, Melissa, a bit and told her that I forgot to put the card in my cameral so I would come back tomorrow to take here picture. She assured me that she would be there, and she was. She even bought me a beer and gave me a Beck's promotional tee-shirt. My kind of bartender.

    Melissa The Gracious And Generous Bartender

    The wall on the side of the bar is brick with the rest of the walls being a deep red. Immediately opposite the end of the bar where I sat (closest to the window) was a large mural of a desert landscape featuring a vibrant red and orange sky with dark Joshua trees in the foreground.

    Along the wall and against the large window next to the door are round and square tables with wooden stools. A couple of the tables spill out onto the sidewalk.

    There are a few more decent sized flat-screened televisions mounted on the walls up front and a very large rear projection television screen in the back along with more tables and chairs. This looks like it would be an excellent place to take in a game because you could easily see it from anywhere.

    I had a Magic Hat #9 and headed on home.

    Two for the day bringing my total for the year to 774 for the year and leaving 226 to go.