Thursday, August 30, 2007

Arrrrrr you looking for a new place to get drunk?

Little Italy’s all kinds of trendy these days, what with its fancy condos and banners of Italian baseball players. There is one place, however that has steadfastly refused revitalization, and we’ll all the better for it.

It’s called The Waterfront, and it’s one of San Diego’s oldest bars. The walls inside are packed with pictures and artifacts from the city’s fishing industry (which was dominated by Italian tuna fisherman in the early and middle years of the last century) making it one of the few bars in San Diego that gives you both a real neighborhood, and real historical feel. They also have pretty good food; the burgers are great and the popcorn is free!

The place is a little too clean to be considered a dive (in my opinion) but it has a very friendly, come-as-you-are kind of atmosphere. The clientele is surprisingly working class for such a yuppified neighborhood, and the bartenders seem like they’d be as comfortable in front of the bar as they are behind it.

The bar’s layout is a kind of “L’ shape that makes it tough to navigate when crowded, and while there’s a fair amount of seating, you feel like your stool is in the way in a lot of spots. No one seems to get mad about it though, and people are good about getting out of you way (especially when you’re trying to carry three drinks).

Once upon a time, before the freeways came in and carved up the area, The Waterfront was actually on the waterfront. Nowadays you can’t really smell the salt air, even when you’re on the outside patio, but there is still an overwhelming sense of the nautical. It kind of makes me want to burst into a round of “What do you do with a drunken sailor?” whenever I’m there. That’s probably just be me, but you can sing along to Weezer and Violent Femmes covers on Wednesday nights when San Diego favorites Fever Crotch perform.

The giant, be-slickered fisherman on the roof makes The Waterfront hard to miss, and with the bar instituting pajama breakfasts on Saturday mornings this month, honestly why would you want to?

Name: The Waterfront
Location: 2044 Kettner Blvd
San Diego, CA (Little Italy)
Fun fact: The Waterfront has San Diego’s oldest liquor license.
State of Guinness: On tap, served in an American-style pint glass. The Waterfront’s Guinness tends to get that kind of coffee flavor to it that you’d expect more from the bottle or can than from the tap. The bartenders get your Guinness to you quicker at The Waterfront than other bars, which is nice, but I think the quick poor contributes to the slightly off taste.

1 comment:

Red said...

Woo Hoo! Free popcorn!