Biggest Beer for the Buck - 2009
The Tall Texan Drive InnD&D Inn
Real Texans drink from goblets, it seems, or maybe the massive glassware at this homey watering hole-in-the-wall is just the only option for holding all that beer. It's $1.25 for a goblet of Lone Star and 25 cents more for one of Shiner, and two or three should see you well on your way to a hangover. You might end up thankful that the place closes down at midnight. Any other beer will come in a bottle, as will the wine (an airplane bottle, in fact), so don't waste your money. Those extra quarters will come in handy at the all-country jukebox in back.
Best Bar Atmosphere/Decor
This clapboard East End beer joint might not look like much from the outside, but a surprise awaits those who venture in. A golden Buddha squats in one corner, while paintings of Frida Kahlo and Marilyn Monroe take pride of place on two walls, where they compete with several specimens of the fine art of taxidermy. On the bar, there's a golden iron candelabra, and looking down from above the bar is a silver robot man fashioned by a regular out of tin cans. A mix of Tejano, classic rock and country billows from the jukebox as neighbors, workers at the nearby Maxwell House coffee plant and homicide detectives and DAs relax over Lone Star and Bud Light. The D&D is a blue-collar bar, make no mistake about that, but a blue-collar bar with panache and grace. Even the smoking porch is all done up in potted plants and colored lights.