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Bars where Pete has had a Drink (3,367 bars; 1,523 bars in Seattle):

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Tuesday, October 09, 2012

#1791 - Rubattino's, Renton, WA - 5/24/2012

Rubattino's was recommended to me by a fellow dive bar fan I met at another bar, who told me, "I like bars that have Christmas lights up in June." He recommended I go at noon, when odds are maximized for seeing "old people fighting." I didn't find that, but I did chat with regulars Valerie and Todd, who has been coming since 1979. Valerie noted wistfully that she didn't drink before she moved to Renton, "And then ... "



Rubattino's was the Owl Annex Beer Parlor, said to be established 1917. However, King County tax records indicate that the Rubattino's building was constructed in 1927, so it would not appear possible that there was a bar in this particular building until after prohibition. Later it was the Owl Cafe, and then the bar and card room portion called the "Owl Room," and there are vestiges of this in the around the bar and back entrance. It was very fine back in the day, Valerie explained, based on stories from her parents. The long bar portion runs astride the restaurant portion, which closes at 2pm. The restaurant serves classic American diner fare, and the "Fine Food" on the sign tends to come off as ironic.

But there's no question that it is a classic dive, with cheap drinks strongly poured, and an interesting cast of regulars.



808 South 3rd Street Renton, WA 98057 - (425) 255-3143         
Est. ? (1917 as The Owl?) - Building constructed 1927
Previous bars in this location: The Owl
Reviews: rentonhipster - patch - yelp

1 comment:

Amber Bamber said...

So yeah...I frickin' love this place. Just had to mention in case you didn't notice... that pic of the Rubattino's sign has a big "penis head" above the "RUB" part. My favorite photo op spot in the bar. Also, I love that Val and Jeff are the folks who enlightened you.