Last week, Boyfriend and I ran out to grab a drink after dinner at a bar we'd admired the few times we'd stopped by the Jimmy John's next door. He's been in Columbus about three months now and I'm only pushing a week, so there's still a lot of drinking ground left for us to cover. This particular bar had an outdoor fire pit and a wonderful spilled-beer frat smell that had me nostalgic for my college days (a phrase I can use now that I've been an alumna for a grand total of four days) and some truly collegiate drink specials to match. To make a long story short, when we were a few $2 Bacardis and $1 PBRs in, I had the sort of brilliant idea that only slightly buzzed individuals can have: to patronize every single bar in Columbus...and to blog about the adventure, of course.
A challenge of this sort requires some ground rules. There are, according to GoTime.com, exactly eight hundred twenty-six drinking establishments in Columbus; we'll attempt to get to all of them within the city limits--my apologies, suburbs--and we'll give preference to bars with happy hours or other drink specials (the better to save money with, my dear). In the course of our adventure, we can't return to a bar until we've checked all the others off our list. All that's required to check a bar off the list is a single drink, but we'll at least try to make it something interesting. And finally, being new to the area and unable to turn down a challenge, we'll try to make a new friend at every place we stop, with "friend" being defined in the drunk sense of "we had a conversation and now we're BFFLs even though I don't know your name."
Monday night we formally kicked off the Drink Columbus challenge at Level, a lovely drinking lounge in the Short North. We chose Level for the all-day happy hour they have on Mondays, which included $1 domestics, $2 drafts and imports, and I think there was also a wells special. We grabbed some seats at the bar and some Sam Adams Summer Ales, Boyfriend's favorite part of summertime. We were seated directly across from the liquor selection and I couldn't help but notice the bottom shelf Three Olives Vodka, which came in what I can only describe as an alarming variety of flavors. Most perplexing amongst these was the "Purple" flavor, which evidently is not the same as the "Grape" flavor. A very charming and somewhat ambiguously gay bartender explained that the Purple is of Purple Drank fame, with the Grape being more traditionally grape-flavored. I couldn't turn down Purple Drank Vodka, so Bartender made me a cocktail with soda water, blueberry juice, and, of course, Purple.
While I was enjoying my Purple, three twenty-something men bee-lined straight for the bar and ordered up a storm of shots. Or rather, two of them ordered up a storm of shots, with the third waffling for a while before placing an order of "chilled Patron with a pineapple juice chaser." Both his friends and the bartender (not my Bartender friend, a different one) suitably mocked Chilled Patron for his girlish drink order--I think the bartender mentioned something about his vagina?--before his friend snagged the pineapple juice chaser and downed it, leaving Chilled Patron without a tasty pineapple aftertaste.
At this point, I felt it was necessary to recommend to Chilled Patron, Shots One, and Shots Two that they try a shot of Purple. Chilled Patron countered my offer and asked if Boyfriend and I had tried the Three Olives Vodka that was flavored like Mountain Dew, which is rather questionably called "Dude." Shots One--or was it Shots Two?--ordered us all a round of Dude shots, which I thought very generous of him.
Shots One, Shots Two, and Chilled Patron, who were apparently only quickly pre-gaming a company function, took off after we all made the appropriate number of jokes about tasting Dude.
So I'll call Drink Columbus venture #1 a success!