Archive for Urban saloon

Showdown at the Saloon

Posted in bar hopping with tags , , , , , on May 6, 2009 by philadelphiaexbeeriment

The Fairmount bar scene is an area that we South Philadelphians have yet to frequent.  So in honor of long since passed Philly Beer Week we decided to go take a gander at what Fairmount had to offer.  One stop along the way was Urban Saloon.

Rootin' Tootin'...from the outside at least...

Rootin' Tootin'...from the outside at least...

Standing outside of Urban Saloon makes one imagine being at a bar where Maverick or Cheyenne might have grabbed a pint or two before they had to outwit and outlaw.  But beyond the old western saloon doors lies something unexpectedly different.

The single-floored, wide room has the architectural structure of a place that was once a storage shed or facility. The gathered curtains separating bar from dining area give a modern take on the saloon doors at the entrance.  However, the combination of new wood floors, brick inlays, spot lights, and four flat screen T.Vs.  makes you wonder if you’re still in the same “saloon” you walked into.

Maybe Urban Saloon is code-word for “fourth dimensional entrance” in these parts.  Which would not only explain the mismatched atmosphere, but would also excuse the hour-long wait we experienced after ordering only a salad and a cup of soup in what was not a crowded restaurant.  Time simply ran differently for the customers and waiters, as the kitchen crawled along in Twilight Zone space.

Green dressing was neither appetizing or tasty.

The green dressing was neither appetizing nor tasty.

When at last the plates of food sallied forth with the slow tread of Yosemite Sam, we could not help but react like a pair of yellow-bellies staring down the barrel of a gun: our meals didn’t so much resemble food, as slop fresh from the trough.  Miss Riot’s “Caprese Salad” was no more than an ant-hill made out of tomatoes, with a few mozzarella balls stuck on top for good measure.  And Kunoichi’s Clam Chowder was about as leathery as a jacket stripped from the back of Steve McQueen.

In the end, we couldn’t even resort to a decent array of beer to fortify our pallets.  Although the menu includes some interesting craft bottles, like Victory and Flying Fish, nevertheless the assortment resembles more nearly the standard beer menu available in any chain restaurant.

As the Western Code saying (sort of) goes, this Saloon ain’t saloon-y enough ‘fer the both of us!  This bar didn’t fulfill what two spaghetti western-watchin’ lasses had wished for.  In fact, Urban Saloon was just as unexpected as this gun fight!

From The Gun and the Pulpit (1974)

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