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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    Around Town: Maloney’s

    This is part two of a multipart series in which the Summer Wildcat will chronicle nearby bars and like-minded establishments in an attempt to find the best spots with the best deals on booze and food.

    Occupying the old train depot just north of what used to be the Fourth Avenue underpass is a bar you might know called Maloney’s.

    Though it’s part of a regional chain, the franchise touts itself as a “”Cheers”” kind of place, where everybody knows your name.

    If you like a decent selection of beer, bar food and service, then Maloney’s is your kind of place.

    The atmosphere tries very hard to be hip and nonchalant. The walls are festooned with photographs, movie stills and quotes from some of the best actors, actresses, poets and musicians of the last 80 or so years, and a life-sized Elvis stands guard by the patio doors.

    The music is a hodgepodge of popular and not-so-popular radio-friendly tunes, except during the evening hours Friday through Saturday, when louder than a passing freight train Top 40 hits belt out from the plethora of speakers and bass boxes strategically placed around the establishment, making you want to step out onto the patio so you can hear yourself think.

    There are ample televisions all around the bar, and at least half of them are showing SportsCenter at any given time. Occasionally, the staff will show video clips on the televisions, with selections ranging anywhere from “”Full Metal Jacket”” to “”Billy Madison.””

    There are two full-sized bars inside, one per room. The two rooms are separated by double-doors that remain open at all times, allowing for relatively free access to either area.

    The bartenders are the usual type you would find in a college bar: attentive enough to take your money and spill some booze into your glass, but apathetic enough to avoid any conversation – except before 4 p.m., when the place is deader than Julius Caesar.

    The wait staff is comprised entirely of young women, who on occasion are just as detached as their counterparts behind the bar. They generally do their best to cater to your food and drink needs but sometimes forget that the customer, while sometimes belligerent and drunk, is always right.

    When Happy Hour ends at 7 p.m., the bar begins to fill up with a strange mixture of college students, blue-collar workers and the occasional wayward Fourth Avenue shopper or tattoo studio employee. The evening crowd gets a little more mixed Thursday through Saturday, with the above-mentioned folks and a sprinkling of Affliction-clad bad boys, preppy 30-somethings and cougars on the prowl for cheap drinks and young boys.

    There are a few coin-operated pool tables inside, along with an air hockey table and some scattered video game consoles. It’s tough to find a straight pool cue and the tables are out of commission too often. There is a small dance floor that fills up too quickly in the evening and remains unbearably hot until the bar closes. The drinks are sometimes too stiff or watered-down, while the food is decent and filling, but there isn’t anything offered on the menu that sets Maloney’s above any other place in town.

    If you’ve never been to Maloney’s, give it a shot. Just don’t expect to have your socks knocked off, by the drinks or the experience.

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