August 11, 2009

Monday Bar Review: J. Gardella's Tavern

11 Ionia Ave. NW (Next to the Van Andel Arena)
Grand Rapids, MI

A nice sleepily little bar with friendly staff and a decent beer selection, I would recommend Gardella's to anyone.

Well, that was lame. Let me try again.

Imagine a world (with out closing your eyes, you need to keep reading) much like our own, but older, sleeker, nicer, wiser, with wooden floors and free bar food. This is Gardella's. When you walk in (on 1/2 off Wednesday) you have to take a step back and wonder why no one looks the part.

When you take another step in, after having your ID checked you realize that Gardella's is a true tavern. Here only your friends know you name, but you will be treated by all just the same. The doorman sits perched and alert by the tub of peanuts, guarding against sabaturs attempting to spill the tub or roust-abouts looking to use the pride of Georgia to abet their juvenille game of 'throw the peanuts at the nerds.' If you your intentions are pure, he will let you take as many as your hands can hold, or in one of the bags next to the tub.

After your peanut adventure you can either proceed upstairs to a VIPesque room reminiscent of 'The Winchester' or head to the basement. Remember in high school, one of your friends parents had a bar in their basement? well double the space, take out the carpet and let your 'bro' friend's girlfriend decorate it and insto-chango you have the basement section of Gardella's. As much of a turn off as you might think it to be, the whole affair allows you to leave when the conversation becomes stale and find more int resting people in another part of the bar.

Rating: 3.0 for initial response. +.05 for not having live music, +.03 for service, +.02 for free peanuts, +.03 for multiple floors, -.02 for accessibility to the stairway.

Final Rating
3.11 units
out of 4 units

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