Beyond the tenth entry
By biconews On 1 Feb, 2000 At 05:00 AM | Categorized As Archives | With 0 Comments

By Erin Moran

Welcome back, devoted reader. I’m sure you were concerned about our articles recent absence on the Bi-Co beer page. Never fear - we are back, and ready to start drinking. Heavily. This week we traveled back to Manayunk for a “total evening” extravaganza. Yes, that’s right, we managed to escape to Old City for at least one week. Phew. First, laden with Nicole Miller and Next bags from our joyous afternoon shopping spree, we stopped in at Jake’s on Main Street for a pre-dinner drink.

Jake’s is a top-rated Philadelphia restaurant with a small, posh bar area in front, overlooking the street. With room for about six stools, it’s not the place to go with a crowd or during the busy hours, but it is perfect for a relaxing, delicious mixed drink. The drinks were fairly expensive, but worth at least one, and the unlimited supply of yummy sugar-coated cashews made the extra dollars well worth it.

We had an Aniaretto Sour, which cost $8. and a couple of Tom Collins’s, which went for $5.75 each. Expensive, yes, but they were some of the best tasting mixed drinks we’ve had. Of course, there were no beers on tap at this place, and by the way, we didn’t get carded.

At 6:00 p.m. there was an older dinner crowd and a soothing, friendly atmosphere. Later on, it got a bit more crowded.

We then had a fine dining experience at the Grasshopper, a Sino-French restaurant also located on Main Street: delicious but fairly expensive entrees, a nice atmosphere and accommodating service. Since we didn’t drink here, we won’t go into the experience, but we wanted to mention it since the food was lovely, and it would be a great place to take a date or your parents.

In pursuit of a little touch of home (ex-Roach’s bartender Chris), we were on our way to Thomas’s, but it was so cold we cut the walk short and ended up at the Flatrock Cafe. Like Jake’s and The Grasshopper, it is conveniently located on Main Street in Manayunk. This is a very Cheers-esque kind oh place, although, unfortunately, no one seemed to know our names. Oh, well. Note that the Flatrock is a valid ID only establishment, so leave your underage friends at home. We had to drop ours off at Buck’s County Coffee next door.

The Flatrock is more of a traditional pub or tavern than most bars, and with at least 50 different beers available, definitely the place for a pint. Hoegaarden, Leffe and Stella Anois were the beers on tap. Obviously lots of Belgian and German beers, including one called Dinkel Acker. Normal price for a draft beer was $3.75. Bottled beer ranged from about $2.50 to $9.00. This is a super “guy” bar, with the requisite sports on TV and - get this - “Beers for Men.”

The uniform at the Flatrock Cafe seems casual in that Abererombie-J.Crew-post-college dress down Friday kind of way. Unfortunately, or fortunately, not all of us were properly attired. As our friend Grant complained, “This is as suave as I come.”

The Flatrock is also a restaurant, serving traditional bar food, and there are plenty of tables and places to sit. By 10:00 p.m. the bar is as already pretty full, and the extremely unhelpful bartender told us this was a normal Saturday night crowd. Thanks, guy.

One element of the Flatrock experience was the oh-so-suave live musician. This guy, who proceeded to butcher Otis Reading [sic] and others, and to blow everyone’s eardrums with full volume sound checks, was heard declaring as he entered the bar. “I’m gonna get laid tonight!” Survey says … I don’t think so. Let’s just say we wouldn’t let him (unlike Otis Redding) sit by the dock at our bay. Period. Still, he was an improvement on the earlier music, which wasn’t so great anyway.

All in all, it was a great evening at some entertaining places, but if you get there and they don’t meet your expectations, just walk a block farther to Thomas’s, swing by the Bayou, try the upstairs at the Manayunk Brewery Company, or if you feel like dancing, check out Chemistry or the Cotton Club. Have fun.

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