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Friday, July 23, 2010

#1185 #S723 - The Copper Gate, Seattle - 7/15/2010

Update: The Copper Gate is closing after June 30, 2013.

The Copper Gate dates back to 1946 and when it went under it was one of the last beer and wine only taverns in the city and one of the more intimidating dives.  It was picked up by the owners of Thaiku and La Carta de Oaxaca sometime shortly after 2000, and its bawdy theme not only preserved but accentuated (Seattle's only surviving "scandalnavian" lounge, they proudly proclaim).


The drinks are like none you'll find anywhere else in the city, centered around their home-made variations of aquavit.   The food is inspired by Scandinavian traditions, which naturally means that it ranges from tasty to disgusting.

But the best reason to go to the Copper Gate is the place itself.  The bar is a replica viking ship, with a sail formed of vintage porn images.  An original column with bas-relief naked woman has been nicely restored.  There are various mild porn dioramas, including a Barbie-orgy version in the women's room.

And then there is the Pussy Room. You enter the Pussy Room through an entry shaped like a vagina, pass a case large case of champagne, and turn into a shabby/swanky room with a stage, stripper pole, high-backed, red velvet seats and room for about two dozen people.

Ostensibly for the jazz band that plays there, and not simply the pun, there is an organ in the back of the Pussy Room.  But you do not simply enter it any time you feel the urge; currently the room is open to the public only from 8pm-10pm Tuesday nights.  At these times they host the impressive jazz drumming of Mike Peterson, a partner on keyboards whom I do not know, and often a guest artist to sit in for a few.

It is a living tribute to the unvarnished, old Ballard, and a must-visit for any lover of unique bars and cocktails.

Try the: Stor Agurk

6301 24th Avenue NW, Seattle, WA 98107 - (206) 706-3292
Est. 1946 - Closed July 1, 2013
thecoppergate.com - seattle times - the stranger - seattlest - seattle weekly - seattle weekly 2 - seattle weekly 3 - yelp

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