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October 8, 2015

The 18 greatest TV drinkeries

by Keith McDuffee, posted Apr 4th 2007 11:02AM
cheersWelcome to TV Squad Lists (formerly 'The Five'), a feature where each blogger has a chance to list his or her own rundown of things in television that stand out from the rest, both good and bad.

Ah, the friendly neighborhood drinking hole. In one way or another, they're there to give you that much needed morning/evening buzz before/after work or school. In what order you visit them is up to you. We've seen our fair share of these booze and caffeine shoppes on TV throughout the years, and here's my pick for the top 18 -- why settle for just ten?

1) Cheers (Cheers) -- Let's get right down to it and start with the obvious number one choice before we move on. I'm not going to insult you with dragging you on to the end to see what is very obviously the most famous of all TV bars. And since I'm from the area, I have no business not making this number one.

central perk2) Central Perk (Friends) -- Another staple of television, there was nary an episode of Friends that didn't feature this coffee house. And come on, it had comfy couches and chairs that seemed empty with the exception of the cast. Now that's dedication to the returning customer!

the bronze3) The Bronze (Buffy The Vampire Slayer) -- The coolest late-teen nightclub on TV. It featured some hit bands before they seemingly made it big, had incredibly cool lighting and yet somehow got away with not having to sell alcohol to draw in a significant crowd. Oh, and it had vampires.

moe's tavern4) Moe's Tavern (The Simpsons) -- Homer, Barney, Carl, Lenny, Larry, Sam and, of course, Moe -- you could always count on seeing them line up in front of (and behind) the bar in nearly every interior shot of this place. I'd say that the moto for this bar should be "everybody knows your name," but I think everyone's either too drunk or simply passed out to remember their own name, nevermind anyone else's.

ten-forward5) Enterprise D's Ten-Forward (Star Trek: The Next Generation) -- How cool was it that the Enterprise had a classy bar to kick back at after a long day of seeing weird shit on an even weirder planet? The losers settled with drinking Sythenol, but good ol' Guinan had the good stuff stashed in back for non-red shirts.

bada bing!6) Bada Bing! (The Sopranos) -- Booze, naked women, terrorist dealings and the mob. What's not to love? It's a wonder why a mortuary didn't set up shop across the street.

the peach pit7) The Peach Pit After Dark (Beverly Hills, 90210) -- Don't laugh. This was a huge part of the series when Dylan and Valerie took it over (yeah yeah, I watched the show), and featured a fair number of hit bands. And you have to love the little shout out to the After Dark screensaver flying toaster right on the front door.

caritas8) Caritas (Angel) -- The hidden demon bar, smack in the middle of LA, owned and operated by green-skinned and red-eyed Krevlornswath of the Deathwok Clan (AKA, Lorne). Not only was it somehow easily hidden from the accidental passer-by, anyone who sung on stage would have their future told to them ... accurately. It was destroyed, rebuilt and destroyed yet again. Alas, it was never meant to stick around.

the warsaw9) The Warsaw (The Drew Carey Show) -- I liked the early episodes of this show much more than the latter, but the bar was an integral part of the show. I mean, two of the main characters lived above the place and had an emergency hatch to the back of the bar; how cool would that be?

the drunken clam10) The Drunken Clam (Family Guy) -- The neon sign alone makes this a worthwhile addition to the list. It was once taken over by the British and then reclaimed in the name of America by Peter and friends. You can't get anymore American than that.

the regal beagle11) The Regal Beagle (Three's Company) -- A frequent stop by Jack Tripper and the girls, this place nearly seemed to be right across the street from the three's apartment. Since none of them seemed to drive and Jack came in loaded every so often, that's probably not far from the truth.

quark's bar12) Quark's Bar, Grill, Gaming House and Holosuite Arcade (Star Trek: Deep Space Nine) -- Not exactly Ten-Forward, but it's a bar in space, which is always cool. And though most just called the place "Quark's", you can't say the name of the place itself doesn't scream "holy crap we are so going there!" And then you leave without any money left in your pockets and realize it's an evil place.

the boar's nest13) The Boar's Nest (The Dukes Of Hazzard) -- Daisy Duke waitressed here. I'd say "'nuff said" but I promised I wouldn't. So I'll mention that the basement has an escape hatch left back from the moonshine running days. That's cool, too.

maclaren's bar14) MacLaren's Bar (How I Met Your Mother) -- Quickly becoming a staple of primetime television, MacLaren's shows up in most episodes of this show. It's the place where the infamous, infinite Slap Bet was made and has seen more of its share of Barney's suiting up (and picking up).

tropicana nightclub15) The Tropicana nightclub (I Love Lucy) -- Ricky was the band leader at this Havana-style club, and though I didn't catch a whole lot of episodes of the show, I know that the club's been the stage for more than just Ricky's music.

cafe nervosa16) Cafe Nervosa (Frasier) -- Clearly a Starbucks knockoff, Frasier and Niles (among most of the others) made this a daily stop both before and after work. Anyplace named "Nervosa" that sells high-test caffeine drinks is alright by me. I get jittery just thinking about it.

lobo lounge17) The Lobo Lounge (Roseanne) -- Though it was on the air for a good number of seasons, Roseanne wasn't a show I made a regular spot for on my TV watching schedule. You don't need to know a whole lot about the show to know that the general setup for the show demand that there be a bar and the characters are there a lot. And then one of them works there.

archie bunker's place18) Archie Bunker's Place (Archie Bunker's Place) -- I'm talking about when this was just a smoky bar, not when they decided to add on and serve food and stuff. Archie didn't have to ask Edith to get him a beah, he had his very own place to get one. Now people were asking him for a cold one.

Honorable Mentions: Rosie's Bar (M.A.S.H.); Java The Hut (Veronica Mars); The Smiling Goat (Ed); Any other Enterprise's Ten-Forward (Star Trek); Paddy's Irish Pub (It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia); Willy's Bar (Buffy The Vampire Slayer); McGinty's (Frasier); The Espresso Pump (Buffy The Vampire Slayer); Harvelle's Roadhouse (Supernatural); Duke's (Frasier)

[Update: From commenters, I can't sleep knowing these aren't on the list: Martini Bar (Ally McBeal); P3 (Charmed); Emerald City Bar (Grey's Anatomy); The Bait Shop (The O.C.)]

Coming next week: The top TV eateries!

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Jimmie Ray Giboney

Hi! I found your list via a search involving "The Bronze". Thanks for that! Okay now here are some contributions from me. #01: On "Married...with Children", the alluded to nudie bar's name was, "The Jiggly Room". (If I can find my picture, I'll show you the neon sign with the name if you want.) #02: Hey! "My Name Is Earl" just came on as I was writing this. So what about, "Chubby's"? #03: You mentioned one place in "How I Met Your Mother", but not the place where Lily's doppelganger Jasmine dances. #04: "Ten-Forward" got its name by being on "Deck 10" and also located at the bow of the starship. The previous Enterprises don't look thick enough in their primary hulls to have had that many decks. Plus the ENTERPRISE-D was large enough to have whole families, as part of the overall less militaristic feel the series began with, so a bar was added then as part of the "city in space" idea. #05: Uh, that's all for now.

July 08 2010 at 10:08 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Tami Brandt

You missed Huggy Bear's THE PITTS from Starsky & Hutch tv series (1974-1980)

June 24 2007 at 5:27 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Great list.. but with one VERY OBVIOUS omission:

Monk's Diner from Seinfeld... the place for so many classic TV moments! Sure, it will probably end up on the "top TV eateries" list, but it was a place where the gang hang out for just coffee many many times.

May 11 2007 at 5:56 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

How in the world could you omit Marios from Taxi?

April 22 2007 at 8:17 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

What about The Brick on Northern Exposure?? Every episode had at least 1 scene from the place. Best background music, too!!

April 08 2007 at 3:58 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

yeah, the OC had those 2 main places. i know that they had the Yacht Club where they were at a lot. and then the diner- they never really called it anything other than that, and then the Bait Shop.

April 06 2007 at 3:56 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

"Crash" from Dark Angel !!!

April 06 2007 at 1:04 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Rosie's, the O-Club, the Swamp...where's the MASH love in the Top 18? Props to those who suggested the Bigger Jigger (guilty pleasure) and Luke's-- if Central Perk rates....

April 06 2007 at 12:17 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

What about the open mic bar in the Tenacious D show (and movie)? I love that place.

April 05 2007 at 9:26 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Anna Granfors

...what Brett said, only louder--LUKE'S! c'mon, a place with a "no cell phones" sign behind the counter? with two amazingly hot guys (Luke and Jess) working there? *easily* oughtta be in the top ten.

April 05 2007 at 8:50 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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