THE BAR BELLE
Ode to R Place
After nine years of doing time behind the bar at R Place Pub, I’m hanging up my bottle opener and calling it quits. I like bartending, don’t get me wrong. And I love R Place, with its hodgepodge of devoted regulars and loyal staff. I just need my weekends to be free so I can, you know, do more research on the other side of the bar for this column.
When I told some of my regulars a few weeks ago that July 6 would be my last day, they scurried back to their table and quickly concocted this plan: They’d drive from Lyndon to the Highlands to pick me up in the morning and send me home in a taxi that night — after successfully and soberly completing my shift, that is. I was genuinely touched by their offer but reminded them that I have this other job Monday morning that requires me to fire on all cylinders — it’s no good starting the week off with a hangover, I’ve learned.
Here’s what I’ll miss the most: My boys Sled, Scooter, Dennis and Greg who keep me company on boring Sunday afternoons. Phil’s cheese fries. My fellow bartenders, most of whom have been there longer than me, like Leigh and Jen, and the ones who keep it interesting, like Heather, Don, Stacy and Greg. Owners Cres and Scott, who were patient with me from the beginning, when I was the slowest, greenest bartender ever. The savage Steelers fans who fill up the bar during football season (hey, Tom and Rosemary, save me a seat!). And the great gatherings, like the staff Christmas party, riding on the St. Patrick’s float and Thunder Over Louisville (hope I’m still invited).
Magic Hat #9 — good beer
If you like Blue Moon, you gotta try Magic Hat #9. It’s got a little hint of apricot and is tasty and refreshing, especially in this sticky summer weather. I know they have it at O’Shea’s, Flanagan’s, Brendan’s and the Hideaway. If you don’t like it, I’ll buy you a Jagerbomb and make fun of your taste in beer.
The R Place cheese fries are seriously one of Louisville’s best-kept secrets.
E-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org or check out leobarbelle.blogspot.com