“I’m serious, this bar has no name”.
The bouncer, the owner, the bartenders, the waitresses and the regulars all stuck with the same story. They all work and play in a mysterious nameless bar that even Columbus and his dependable compass would not have been able to find.
I got lucky.
Thankfully, the familiar vocals of visiting singer/songwriter, Erik the Viking, came drifting out of a random unmarked door in the shopping center on the University Hill, giving away the bar’s hiding place. Although tracking down this secret bar can be a challenge, there’s definitely a reward on the other side of the intimidating, dark door marked by a small window clad with iron bars.
The No Name Bar, as it’s affectionately known, is located in the heart of a neighborhood known for cheap beer and drink specials—but don’t expect to find your run-of-the mill alcoholic beverages at this bar. Instead of PBR and Coors Light on tap, this bar is serving up beers that have Great American Beer Festival medals displayed on their mantles, throwback cocktails and infused tequilas. If you told me that I’d be drinking an Oskar Blues Deviant Dales or a Ska Brewing’s Modus Hoperandi in an area with the highest concentration of establishments that cater to the late night appetites of college kids in Boulder—I’d probably (respectfully) laugh in your face.
But that’s exactly what I did on a recent Thursday night at the beautifully constructed, handcrafted, 90-degree bar at The No Name Bar. I drank good beer. I listened to some good live music, and I had a really good time. Although only a few of the seven taps are stocked with some of the best beers in Colorado, a lengthy bottled beer list picks up the slack offering a consist list of craft brews from Oskar Blues, Avery, Ska and Young’s Brewing as well as the usual suspects like PBR tall boys, Negro Modelo and Heineken. Is the beer list amazing? Not by any means—but the majority of the patrons that post up at the bar and in the booths that line the speakeasy-like dark wooden paneling on the walls have a craft beer in front of them.
Although this bar hovers around 4 stars on the adult scale, the occasional crew of drunken college students passing through bumps off a half a star. And while I’m thrilled that they offer food seven nights a week, the only food items you’ll find on the menu come from the Cosmo’s Pizza kitchen next door. (Fun Fact: the owner of Cosmo’s Pizza on the Hill also owns The No Name Bar. He is also doubles as the amazing carpenter that designed and built the interior of The No Name Bar. You’ll be even more impressed by this fact once you see the inside of this beautiful bar). But all in all, aside from maneuvering through groups of giggling college students to find it—The No Name Bar is alright with me. I’m sure I’ll be back soon, sipping on an Oskar Blues Ten Fidy, noshing on some bread sticks and listening to some live music by some some of the most talented musicians in the area.
The No Name Bar is located at 1325 Broadway Street and is open seven nights a week from 4:00 p.m. – 1:00 a.m. Check their Facebook page for a list of upcoming live music performances.