400 S. Baldwin Avenue
Arcadia, CA 91007
Parking: Free Mall Parking
Drink Deals: $3 Draft Beers; $4 Wines the Glass; $5 Martinis
Food Deals: ½ off Appetizers
After hitting Wood Ranch and Cheesecake Factory on our Suburban Happy Hour Tour at the Santa Anita Mall, Booze and I had given our stomachs and livers a brief reprieve while as we scoured the going out of business sale at Borders (friends reading this – don’t be surprised if you get a book for the winter holidays). Sufficiently shopped out, we made our way back to the Tour for our final stop at Bar Louie.
You get the feeling about Bar Louie that it’s the kind of bar that the folks at the mall go to when they’re done with work. Well, I got that feeling from a) the clientele and b) a girl working at the Borders store who asked her friend, “So girl, you going to Bar Louie after work?” There were definitely other after-work people there as well and for good reason – Bar Louie has a smashin’ Happy Hour – ½ off all appetizers, $3 draft beers, $4 glasses of wine, and $5 for all their martinis.
And Bar Louie does it big – the Happy Hour is made up of something like 15 Appetizers, over 25 beers, over 12 Martinis (I didn’t count the wine choices :). Normally, I’d be all about the variety – and I guess I am still (I mean I liked the Cheesecake Factory in my Tuesday review), but there’s something about Bar Louie… From its signage that looks a little too “we’re having the time of our lives” to be believable to its 2 Twitter accounts that haven’t been updated in over a year, it just feels like it’s trying too hard. Like a nerdy guy wearing all name brands to be cool, but as we should all know – being cool comes from within. Oh man, that’s some Stuart Smalley kind of shit!
There really wasn’t anything wrong with the food & drink options whatsoever. We were pretty fooded out, but decided on the Bruschetta (a steal at $3.75), which included both dairy (parmesan cheese) and onions – which we’d successfully avoided up until that point! It was served in a mondo glass bowl with tasty toasts and even though I was pretty full – I ain’t gonna lie, I enjoyed dat dere bruschetta.
For drinks, we were intrigued by the $5 (normally $10) martini menu; Booze ordered The Clover – Hennessy, Makers Mark, Agave Nectar, Fresh Lemon and Orange Juice, Orange Twist – and I The Effen Good – Effen Cucumber, Mint, Fresh Lime Juice, and Agave Nectar. However, Booze wasn’t crazy about the pretty liquor-y taste of hers and I found mine a little too sweet – so we switched and were both happy campers.
For general scene, the hostess and our waitress seemed nice enough and the Happy Hour was pretty happening – lots of dudes around the bar watching the multiple TV’s and a couple tables of colleagues that I hoped Michael Scott, Creed, and Stanley were a part of. No such luck. Still, sometimes we know that truth is stranger than fiction, I’m sure we could’ve heard some fun office stories if we’d listened close enough!
All-in-all, I really can’t hate on Bar Louie because I really dug the many choices and really good prices for its Happy Hour; I just think maybe I’m not the target audience. And as Stewart Smalley says, “that’s okay.” However, this could be the right place for younger folks looking to get an after-work drink and bite with colleagues.
Rating: 3.5 Martinis