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Aug 21, 2014
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Games and Guzzling at The Pour House
By Matt Berkley | Photos by Ashley Gieseking
Posted On: 10/01/2010   

It’s Saturday night and the bartender at The Pour House has been knee-deep in drink orders for hours. Getting a beer is proving to be difficult. Monopolizing the barkeep is a pack of ex-frat-boy types crowded around the lucky few who landed seating at the small bar. I’m about to get her attention, and – nope, she’s off to set up another string of Jäger shots. If it were my job, I’d be ready to kill, but this gal has it well in hand. She returns to me, weary, but with a great smile. “What’ll it be?”

Such is life at The Pour House, Washington Avenue’s newish bar on the western edge of downtown. Situated on the ground floor of the Tudor Building, the bar appears, from the outside at least, to be a destination tap house complete with a long list of beers in a range of styles and from a host of countries. Such is not the case. The Pour House is a no-frills, no-nonsense beer-’n’-shot joint. Guinness, Blue Moon Belgian White, Schlafly Kölsch and Hoegaarden were the only draft options, with a few additional foreign and domestics in bottles. Was I disappointed by this? Yes. But I soon got over it. This place is too fun to be in a bad mood for very long. 

The appeal of The Pour House is really all the bar games and toys. In addition to the obligatory arcade offerings, the bar features darts, an oversized Jenga game (about 3 feet tall), an enormous shuffleboard table and the biggest MegaTouch game I’ve ever seen. Outside, teams form and then grab a few bean bags to play Corn Toss with custom wooden platforms. Adding to the air of sportsmanship, a bulletin board titled The Pour House Wall ranks official achievements such as highest bar tab, tallest Jenga, best arcade scores, most shots in a round and first instances (i.e. first person to dance on the bar, first to pass out, etc.).

The crowd is what you’d imagine. In addition to the frat crew, you might catch double date couples meeting over buckets of beer or even random club-hopper types in tight shirts, killing time before the 3 a.m. spots start to get moving. All around, the mood is very casual and anything but pretentious. 

The drinks, as mentioned, are pretty standard. Stick with the basics in terms of cocktails (these are served up fairly stiff). In addition to weekly beer specials, the bar normally has a fruit-infused shot (watermelon or pineapple vodka, for example) that’s made in-house. 

The décor doesn’t warrant even the use of the word “décor.” It’s a tight space with solid concrete floors, gray walls, flat-screen TVs, some exposed brick and a daily drink specials board. A spot at the bar is convenient for power drinking, but it’s a lot more enjoyable to grab a table outside. On a warm night with a cold beer, The Pour House’s patio has a great block-party feel. The digital jukebox inside churns out old-school hits that pour into the street, giving the Corn Toss games a soundtrack.

The Pour House doesn’t take itself too seriously, and that’s the appeal. It’s the place for meeting all the old friends and drinking all the old beer you remember, and maybe fitting in a quick game of jumbo Jenga.

Check it: Bar games galore.
Hipster or Hoosier: An under-35 crowd: young punks, college kids, hacky-sackers, pre-club drinkers, young professionals in loosened ties.
Suds or ’Tinis: A beer in one hand and a straight shot in another.
Where: The Pour House, 1933 Washington Ave., St. Louis, 314.241.5999
When: Daily – 11 a.m. to 1:30 a.m.

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DATE: 12/29/2011 06:39AM    POSTED BY: acceptnobs56
Do NOT patronize this bar!! The service from Hannah sucks and she is a witch! The bar manager John has told me I'm banned from the bar on the say so of Hannah and her friends! See this review I made at urbanspoon.com ! http://www.urbanspoon.com/r/28/1525514/restaurant/St-Louis/Downtown/The-Pour-House-St-Louis#all_reviews

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