[Bars & Clubs]

[ Index | Bars & Clubs | Metro | Metroactive Central | Archives ]

Strangers in the Night

[whitespace] JFK JFK wouldn't have ordered a margarita. No blender drinks for him. Even in the tiniest of dives--places that would have appealed to the maverick son of a New England patriarch--JFK would imbibe classic drinks. Scotch and a splash of water. Seven and seven. Gin and tonic.




I planned each charted course
Each careful step along the byway
But more, much more than this
I did it my way
"My Way" (Revaux/Francois/Anka)

By Christina Waters

IMAGINE JFK'S predicament. A perpetual rocket in his pocket and always in need of some clandestine jet fuel. Problem was, everybody not only knew his name, they knew his famous face. Golden-haired, handsome, charismatic--owning arguably the highest profile on earth, John Fitzgerald Kennedy didn't exactly blend into the crowd.

But JFK was far too classy a guy to perpetually hang with his brother Bobby getting quietly soused in the Oval Office. He needed some escapes, a few safe houses for those quiet getaways he sought with call girls, movie actresses, Rat Pack cronies and Mafia molls.

JFK also needed back-street bastions of masculinity in which to tell raunchy jokes and unwind with other powerful men, men who also owned dozens of pairs of cuff links and wore rugby shirts as if they were tailored in Savile Row.

Small mom-and-pop Italian diners or Irish pubs suited the last mythic hero of the free world. Or dark nautical places with wooden picnic tables on some hideaway pier overlooking fishing boats. His good fellas, pals and others who inhabited the demimondes of racketeering and prostitution would eat spaghetti or corned beef in the main dining room, while JFK in his shirt-sleeves would sip gin and tonic at a table in the back of the barroom. He would laugh a lot, his libido and sense of freedom lubricated by Bombay gin and a squeeze of lime.

JFK wouldn't have ordered a margarita. No blender drinks for him. Even in the tiniest of dives--places that would have appealed to the maverick son of a New England patriarch--JFK would imbibe classic drinks. Scotch and a splash of water. Seven and Seven. Gin and tonic. Martinis made by simply passing a bottle of vermouth, unopened, over the top of the V-shaped stemware. One olive. Shaken, not stirred.

He would have a single long sip, put down the glass and then turn back to the conversation. The stories would soar, back and forth, with Jack chiming in every now and then, exaggerating his version, and laughing a lot. After unwinding, he'd turn back to the martini, now wearing a frost of condensation, a few drops of which stained the wooden table top with dark moisture. And he'd down the remaining high-octane cocktail in a single long pull.

A flush would caress his neck and work its way up his jaw, cheeks and finally set the handsome forehead glowing.

He'd order another martini and ask the guy behind the bar if they had any bocce balls. He was happiest in places like this.

A JFK Kind of Place

Alex's 49er Inn
2214 Business Circle, San Jose (408/279-9737)

Beefy's Cabin
1028 W. Washington Ave., Sunnyvale (408/736-7141)

Blake's
17 N. San Pedro St., San Jose (408/298-9221)

Blinky's Sports Café
3145 El Camino Real, Santa Clara (408/241-3933)

Britannia Arms Cupertino
1087 Saratoga-Sunnyvale Road, Cupertino (408/252-7262)

Camelot
275 E. Dunne Ave., Morgan Hill (408/782-2525)

Cinebar
69 E. San Fernando St., San Jose (408/292-9562)

The Drying Shed
402 Toyon Ave., San Jose (408/272-1512)

Dutch Goose
3567 Alameda de las Pulgas, Menlo Park (650/854-3245)

Fibbar Magee's
156 S. Murphy Ave., Sunnyvale (408/749-8373); and 223 Castro St., Mountain View (650/964-9151)

Hedley Club
Hotel De Anza, 233 W. Santa Clara St., San Jose (408/286-1000)

Henry's World-Famous Hi-Life
301 W. St. John St, San Jose (408/295-5414)

Jack's Club
167 E. Taylor St., San Jose (408/293-8995)

Jack's Steak House
17535 Monterey Road, Morgan Hill (408/779-2524)

Joe's Bar and Grill
1460 Old Oakland Road, San Jose (408/453-3392)

Katie Bloom's
150 S. First St., San Jose (408/294-4408)

Molly Magee's
241 Castro St., Mountain View (650/961-0108)

McNeil's Bar & Grill
800 N. Kiely Blvd., Santa Clara (408/244-4038)

Outback Steakhouse & Bar
1885 S. Bascom Ave., Campbell (408/371-5384). Second location: 20630 Valley Green Dr., Cupertino (408/255-4400)

Paul and Harvey's
130 S. Murphy Ave., Sunnyvale (408/736-5770)

Rudy's Pub
117 University Ave., Palo Alto (650/329-0922)

Scruffy Murphy's
187 S. Murphy Ave., Sunnyvale (408/735-7394)

Station 55 Bar & Grill
55 Fifth St., Gilroy (408/847-5555)

Stein Lounge
939 B St., Fremont (510/537-6770)

Steamer's
50 University Ave., Los Gatos (408/395-2722)

The Three Flames
1547 Meridian Ave., San Jose (408/269-3133)

The Wagon Wheel
282 E. Middlefield Road, MV (650/967-1244)

[ San Jose | Metroactive Central | Archives ]


From the June 11-17, 1998 issue of Metro.

Copyright © Metro Publishing Inc. Maintained by Boulevards New Media.


Foreclosures - Real Estate Investing
San Jose.com Real Estate