Where all the deuces are wild
At Austin’s Little Longhorn Saloon, a chicken takes center cage
The dive bar’s obituary probably has been written a thousand times, and yet: The ratio of divebar listicles to divebar obits must be about 10 to 1. Either the dive bar’s demise has been greatly exaggerated or the definition of such watering holes has become so unmanageable that it encompasses just about any place that doesn’t serve a $20 Manhattan. ¶ So how can we characterize the American dive bar so that everyone agrees? In short, we can’t. But we needed some guidelines as we searched for the country’s most authentic dives over the past months. True dives possess a handful of basic attributes: They must have history; they must have regulars; they cannot be expensive; they cannot have craft cocktails. ¶ You might disagree with our operating narrative, and no doubt you’ll dislike some of our choices. But this is our point: A dive bar is personal. It’s where friends gather, drink and argue loudly — and still walk away as kindred spirits.
Fourth in an eight-part series.