“No Thanks” Bar Rescue. These 5 QC Bars Are Perfect The Way They Are
So Jon Taffer tells TMZ about a horrible bar in Council Bluffs and people lose their minds. Well, as a connoisseur of local tavern fare, I think sometimes Bar Rescue forgets what makes a bar great to begin with.
A fancy name and hipster food might look good on TV, but here in the Quad Cities, if you want a genuine good time with great friends, you don't have to go all out. You just have to go out.
Here are the bars that immediately came to mind when I thought about great places that are perfect the way they are, thankyouverymuch.
Steve's Old Time, Rock Island, IL.
There's something comforting about walking in the front of a place, and seeing all the way to the back door. Why? No room for attitudes. Go there for lunch and be surprised--lawyers and street sweepers sitting next to each other, having a beer with lunch, discussing the latest Cubs win or woe. Go there at night, and Jeff, the owner, may have tucked a band in the corner next to the slot machines. No worries, there's always room for one more person. And time for one more beer--as long as it's a Budweiser!
BS General Store, Folletts, IA.
Your GPS will take you right by this place, which technically is in Camanche, IA. But it's right where HWY 67 bends near Folletts, and you'll miss it if you blink. Inside, it's a real store...toilet paper, dog food, and a full service bar. I went there once, and felt out of place. I went there a second time, and was behind the bar serving beers. They take a liking to you quick around there. At night, sometimes, when they feel like it, there's Karaoke. That's as much as warning as anything--because if there's one person singing--everybody's gonna sing. "I love this bar."
Dee's Place, Rock Island, IL.
If your Grand-Pappy entertained you with stories of his one-room schoolhouse, you'll be able to tell your kids about the one-room bar/house called Dee's Place. The first time I went there, I seriously thought I was walking into someone's 15x20' living room. And frankly, at one time in the not so distant past--it probably was. The door into the bar is the side door of the small house on 5th Av. And you're greeted by a pool table. If there's someone playing, you have to run the gauntlet around the extended pool cues to get to the bar. Dee is always there--um, because it's her house! On special occasions, the pool table is moved to the side, leaving a nice 4' space for dancing. But watch your head, because the light that was previously over the table is now swinging into your head. Cheers!
Geezer's Draft House, Davenport's West End, IA.
Jon and his Bar Rescue crew may have already been to Geezers, since it's recently changed it's name to include 'Draft House.' But make no mistake--this place is a make-your-own-fun kinda place. The things I've seen here defy description (and liquor code), but if you see a guy doing a handstand drinking from a keg--you're at the right place. I've seen the best blues bands jamming here one night, and motorcycles parked inside on another. But the beer is cold, and the people will give you the shirt off their back (uh, oh. Another code violation!) if you need it.
Rascals, Moline, IL.
This might be the only "Theme" bar on my list, but the fact that it's been building on it's image for the last three decades makes this also the best of the five for having a drink with your buddies. Whether you're popping in after work for a quick cold one, or planning on a long night of pool, darts and B.S., the crew behind the bar at Rascals will treat you right. The walls are covered in authentic rock memorabilia from artists who've played there, and other stuff that should really be in the Hard Rock Cafe. Live music on one side, life on the other. That's Rascals.
Now my list is by no means complete. I'm sure you have 5 that are tops in your mind right now. The point is, not every bar that has a catchy decor is interesting, and not every simple place needs rescuing. Hope to see you out-and-about. Salut!
If you missed it, "Bar Recue's" Jon Taffer told TMZ the "Worst Bar Ever" is in Iowa.