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Wednesday, March 3rd, 2010—Bar 52

Day 52—Tuesday, March 2nd

First off, if you’re in the Chicago area, check out my friend Karla Zimmerman’s app. It’s a guide for cheap but tasty eats at local restaurants loaded with good food and lots of Windy City character. It’s just 99 cents from the i-Tunes app store and it has over 70 foodie-favorite restaurants write ups and directions and phone numbers. I’m going to Chicago this April and I’m going to use this...but first I really need to figure out what an app is. Anyway, check out Karla’s Chicago Foodie App here: Chicago Cheap Eats.

Okay, it’s been awhile since we’ve been to a bar with live music, so I went to my good friend Google and found a bar called Fontana’s that's on the Lower East Side near Chinatown.
This place looks like a motherfucking paradise of a joint. There’s two bars on the first floor, one’s a full bar as you enter and then there’s a loungey type one in another room with a pool table. And then there’s another bar in the basement and that’s where the band’s play. I always like seeing band’s in the basement, it brings out the John Wayne Gacy in me. So put on your clown suit and let’s get cracking!

Andy works the door and he didn't even card me. Sob!

The front bar looks cool and there's a free bar stool.

Dan the barender cracked open an ice-cold can of Rolling Rock for me. In addition to serving up drinks, Dan's a talented painter and exhibits his work in and around NYC. Check out his paintings here: Dan Sabau Paintings.

Some of the many beer selections to be had hang on the turquoise painted walls.

What's so funny about Peace, Love and Beer? From left, Martin, Ihae, Tika and Eric relaxing and drinking at Fontana's.

Breast in show!

Ali is a bar back and he's in the back bar. It's all making sense now...or is it?

Zebra striped booths and tables in the back room.

The pool table in the spacious back room.

Mike and Zofia were whooping it up at the front bar.

Go ahead punk...make my day!

Lukas, Antje and Oliver were enjoying drinks in the back banquette.

Uh oh, looks like Elvis ate a bad cheeseburger. Want some Tums, big guy?

Here's Dan and Pete. Pete was working the door that led down to the band of the evening...

The Tryptics! They put on a great show.

Christy was the bartender on duty in the basement. Cheers!

The Tryptics on stage. (Again, if the video doesn't play, try a different browser. Here at home Firefox doesn't work but Safari does. It's the opposite at work. Technology gives me a headache!)

Proof that Fontana's doesn't over serve!

A colorful story from the taxi driver on my way home. Goodnight everybody!


If bars were baseball games, Fontana’s would be a triple play. There’s three distinctly different bars in this spacious saloon, all under one roof.

The front room has a large tiki bar with oversized, comfortable red-leather banquettes and tables lining the wall. Kitschy paintings of Dirty Harry era Clint Eastwood and a green Elvis hang above the banquettes and behind the bar. The room in the rear is only open weekends and can be rented out for private parties. It  has a lounge-like feel with a large screen where campy videos are projected. There’s a dash of playroom thrown in because of the pool table there. In the basement live music is cranked out by mainly local bands. If you prefer canned music, the jukebox in the front room has a nice selection ranging from the B-52’s, to Johnny Cash, T. Rex, James Brown and The Police.

Happy hour starts early here at 2pm till 9 pm and beers go for between three to four bucks. And thee’s plenty to choose from, Fontana’s boasts twelve beers on draught and a good selection of bottled beers including Corona, Heinekin, Budweiser and cans of Rolling Rock. All three bars are fully stocked and the bartenders and patrons are a friendly and fun bunch. No attitude at Fontana’s, just lots of room and plenty of booze, music and fun. Like I said, a triple play!

105 Eldridge St (between Broome and Grand St.)

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Reader Comments (5)

Interviewing Cabbies can be another blog in itself!

March 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterHappy Cappy

A 2 to 9 Happy Hour? Hooray! Fontana's looks awesome. My kind of place. Feeling gloomy? Here, have some boobs! That dude giving you shit? Here, let Dirty Harry take care of it. Elvis or The Incredible Hulk circa 1973? You make the call. I want to go to there!

March 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterBiff

That's like strip mall of bars! Great place and I love the cab driver interview!

March 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterBarfly

Nowadays, when I get carded, (not often) I'm flattered as hell!

March 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJaws the Cabbie

Wait just a second! Are you serious about the 2 to 9 Happy Hour? Because THAT is right up my alley!

March 3, 2010 | Unregistered Commentermeleah rebeccah

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