Legend has it that the two brothers who opened St. Pete's Dancing Marlin (300 Main, 713-227-1511) funded it by reeling in a really big fish. First prize in the Bertram-Hatteras Shoutout that year was half a million bucks. And the Zotoses' haul, a 554-pound, 17-foot blue marlin that now hangs over the bar, was second to none. Pete Zotos runs the original Dancing Marlin in Dallas, while John keeps things happening in Houston -- now with the help of live music. You can catch the John Evans band belting out hod-rod country originals while they set fire to their stand-up bass. You might also see Jason David Hiatt host an open mike night that includes a guy singing Talking Heads songs a capella, complete with machine, drum and studio noises. As for drinks, the bartenders here can make anything. Their Long Island Iced Tea packs a helluva punch, so sip slowly and keep your eyes open for what happens next. The secret to this place is to hang around until closing. That's when groupies have been known to shed their tops to give the boys onstage a little show of their own. No lie.
St. Pete's Dancing Marlin's Long Island Iced Tea:
1/2 ounce McCormick vodka
1/2 ounce McCormick gin
1/2 ounce Ron Castillo rum
1/2 ounce Mohawk triple sec
3/4 ounce sour mix
3/4 ounce Coke
Cocktail stirrer in shape of a big blue marlin
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In a pint glass filled with ice, combine above ingredients (holding two bottles in each hand simultaneously). Splash coke and sour mix on top. Garnish with large lemon wedge.