There’s nothing wrong with a hipster bar. There’s nothing wrong with whimsical menus printed on old *NSYNC CD covers or cocktails inspired by ‘90s candy or bearded bartenders. But there are a few bars that take it too far. There are sh*tty hipster bars that are too ironic to even care about making a decent drink, and here are 10 signs you just walked into one.
The Cocktail Menu Is Inscrutable
Spice/milk/herbaceous. Popcorn oil-washed amaro, aerated in ice. Shark Attack (no ingredients listed). These are not good cocktail descriptions. These are riddles.
Everyone in the Bar Has a Full Tattoo Sleeve
It’s amazing you were even let in the bar, considering the fact that your one tattoo isn’t even visible. These people did not get their tattoos by choice. They got inked because it’s part of the uniform.
Everywhere You Look There’s a Reference to Something
From the collection of 1980s horror film VHS cases that cover the bathroom walls to the tables plastered with ALF cartoons to the collectable Burger King Kids’ Club water glasses, this bar speaks fluent millennial nostalgia.
PBR Costs More Than $4
You’re being fleeced. The bar, knowing its clientele, is charging you way too much for a strictly satisfactory beer. Get out.
There Are Artifacts from the Building’s Former Life as a Laundromat, Slinky Factory, Etc.
What are you sitting on? Is that an upturned bucket? Oh, right. This place used to be a dairy. Cute.
There Are No “Normal” Glasses
There are lightbulbs and children’s shoes and tiny plastic baseball caps that once held ice cream—but no coupes in sight. It’s all fun and games until you’re frenching a plastic alligator just to get a sip of your Gin & Tonic.
There’s $19 Beef Jerky
And that’s about it when it comes to snacks. But it comes highly recommended by the bartender who knows a guy who knows the guy who made the spice blend that the jerky company uses on their American Wagyu beef.
The Room Is Lit by Bare Edison Light Bulbs and Bare Edison Light Bulbs Only
Good luck reading the already unintelligible menu!
The Bathroom Signs Are Clever But Painfully Confusing
Are you a moose or a squirrel? A chicken or an egg? Nimbus clouds or cumulus clouds? Martin Sheen or Charlie Sheen? Just choose a door and hope for the best.
No One Is Actually Having Any Fun
They all feel really cool about being here, but are they actually enjoying themselves? It certainly doesn’t seem like it. They sure are racking up the Instagram likes, though.