The Stag's Head
Any Irish or English transplant would be right at home at The Stag's Head, where the bangers and mash and fish 'n' chips measure up to the exacting standards of the old country. Competing with them are American finger-food favorites: fajita nachos and stuffed jalapeños as well as succulent Angus burgers and a bevy of fine sandwiches. But The Stag's Head soars beyond those standbys with modern offerings that raise the, uh, bar for any self-respecting pub. Try their savory soups of the day and fresh, creative salads. But the menu's star is the turkey-sized rotisserie chicken half, balanced with potatoes, an impressive side salad and veggies -- all for under seven bucks. And at this classy pub, an endless variety of brews awaits to wash it all down.
After the legendary Junior Brown made his exit from the stage at the Continental Club recently, the patrons at the crowded nightspot were greeted with a shock. Out of nowhere came a tall, curly-haired young man who leapt on stage and began to dance like a monkey. "Woo-hoo!" he hollered at the top of his lungs, "Woo-hoo, Junior Brown! Woo-hoo!" Getting over their surprise, the revelers began to follow the man's lead in pushing for an encore, which Brown heartily delivered. This monkey-mimicking free spirit is our pick for best bartender. Not only does Mike remember regulars' names and their favorite drinks, which he delivers with a congenial goofball grin, his lively personality and signature "Woo-hoo!" make him a bartender you won't forget the next morning -- even if you wake up hungover from too many of his drinks.

After the legendary Junior Brown made his exit from the stage at the Continental Club recently, the patrons at the crowded nightspot were greeted with a shock. Out of nowhere came a tall, curly-haired young man who leapt on stage and began to dance like a monkey. "Woo-hoo!" he hollered at the top of his lungs, "Woo-hoo, Junior Brown! Woo-hoo!" Getting over their surprise, the revelers began to follow the man's lead in pushing for an encore, which Brown heartily delivered. This monkey-mimicking free spirit is our pick for best bartender. Not only does Mike remember regulars' names and their favorite drinks, which he delivers with a congenial goofball grin, his lively personality and signature "Woo-hoo!" make him a bartender you won't forget the next morning -- even if you wake up hungover from too many of his drinks.

Most jukes these days are stocked by companies armed with demographic studies. Not so at Under the Volcano, where owner Pete Mitchell don't need no steenkin' studies. Instead, this box is full of stuff he likes, which ranges from Cesaria Evora to New Orleans brass bands to sacred steel to mid-period Rolling Stones to Scott Miller to Hank Williams. Whether you're in the mood to cry in your St. Arnold over a little honky-tonk, or knock back a few of the bar's signature frozen cuba libres to a little vintage son, the Volcano's got you covered.
Under The Volcano
Most jukes these days are stocked by companies armed with demographic studies. Not so at Under the Volcano, where owner Pete Mitchell don't need no steenkin' studies. Instead, this box is full of stuff he likes, which ranges from Cesaria Evora to New Orleans brass bands to sacred steel to mid-period Rolling Stones to Scott Miller to Hank Williams. Whether you're in the mood to cry in your St. Arnold over a little honky-tonk, or knock back a few of the bar's signature frozen cuba libres to a little vintage son, the Volcano's got you covered.

Best Club for Your Grandparents and/or Grandchildren

Pe-Te's Cajun Barbecue

This funky and authentic slice of Cajun country offers a great time to both the Geritol and Flintstones Chewables sets. Every Saturday afternoon for the last 20 years, Pe-Te's has morphed from a Cajun barbecue stand to a whirling zydeco dance hall. The Saturday dances start at two and last until six -- perfect for those for whom the nighttime is not the right time. Owner Pe-Te Johnson keeps it dark inside, though, to give the illusion that it's dark outside, and the music is loud enough to be heard but not earsplitting. Patrons range in age from nine to 90 and every skin color from pink to ebony, and all of them dance with each other. Sometimes even the bands have members from as many as three generations. The gumbo and 'cue are delicious, as are the ice-cold Dixies.

Best Club for Your Grandparents and/or Grandchildren

Pe-Te's Cajun Barbecue

This funky and authentic slice of Cajun country offers a great time to both the Geritol and Flintstones Chewables sets. Every Saturday afternoon for the last 20 years, Pe-Te's has morphed from a Cajun barbecue stand to a whirling zydeco dance hall. The Saturday dances start at two and last until six -- perfect for those for whom the nighttime is not the right time. Owner Pe-Te Johnson keeps it dark inside, though, to give the illusion that it's dark outside, and the music is loud enough to be heard but not earsplitting. Patrons range in age from nine to 90 and every skin color from pink to ebony, and all of them dance with each other. Sometimes even the bands have members from as many as three generations. The gumbo and 'cue are delicious, as are the ice-cold Dixies.

After a hot, sweaty night of dancing and slamming to punk rock legends the Queers on the bottom level of Fitzgerald's, a group of tough-looking teenage girls waited in line for the bathroom. As they leaned against the wall, wiping their Manic Panic hair out of their eyes, they couldn't help but check out the three women in their late twenties who were waiting for the bathroom as well. Shouldn't these older chicks be at an after-work happy hour, knocking back martinis and discussing their retirement plans? Or racing home to get dinner ready for the kids? The curiosity got to be too much for one troubled youth, who finally got up the courage to ask the age of one older woman as she walked out of a stall and headed for the sink. "I'm 28," the woman announced, wiping her hands on a paper towel. "And I will always go to shows." As she sauntered out, the sense of awe lingering in the bathroom was palpable.

Fitzgerald's
After a hot, sweaty night of dancing and slamming to punk rock legends the Queers on the bottom level of Fitzgerald's, a group of tough-looking teenage girls waited in line for the bathroom. As they leaned against the wall, wiping their Manic Panic hair out of their eyes, they couldn't help but check out the three women in their late twenties who were waiting for the bathroom as well. Shouldn't these older chicks be at an after-work happy hour, knocking back martinis and discussing their retirement plans? Or racing home to get dinner ready for the kids? The curiosity got to be too much for one troubled youth, who finally got up the courage to ask the age of one older woman as she walked out of a stall and headed for the sink. "I'm 28," the woman announced, wiping her hands on a paper towel. "And I will always go to shows." As she sauntered out, the sense of awe lingering in the bathroom was palpable.

The Wine Bucket is part fancy boutique, part bar -- which may be one reason it's such a comfortable place to drink alone. The store adds an air of casualness to the dimly lit bar. So you can stop in for a glass of wine after a day of shopping or working (depending on your lot in life), and there's nothing sad about it. More important, though, especially for women: No one will bother you if you decide to settle into one of the little tables surrounded by four hefty chairs. Each is a world unto itself, a place to savor an expensive glass of wine, a plate of Danish Brie and a moment to yourself.

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