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Sangria Restaurant
721 Willow St, San Jose 408.287.9777

Saddle Up

Where sitting at the bar is a gripping experience

By Mary Spicuzza

Sangria Restaurant transforms the usually mundane tasks of barhopping, like mounting a stool, into a near-religious experience. Its collection of brightly colored ceramic saddle stools beckons adventurous types to abandon their tables and head straight for the festive bar section, complete with its homemade sangria and an impressive tequila selection. Bar patrons just shouldn't plan on heavy, tear-in-their-beer talks--one friend became so absorbed in straddling her saddle and spinning around (yelling "Whoopee!") that she couldn't hear a word anyone else was saying. Heavier sangria drinkers may eventually want to move to an actual chair, as riding sidesaddle on a stool can prove dangerous to inebriated and less-coordinated users.

Sangria is not a singles bar, nor does it have any decipherable hipster scene. And anyone rushing to find a quick taqueria meal should look elsewhere. But those looking for a beautiful spot to gather a group of friends for an evening filled with freshly made tortilla chips, big plates of Mexican food and a tasty alternative to the typical margarita couldn't have wished for a better find.

Servers seem to move at a leisurely, south-of-the-border pace, and the cozy telephone stall doesn't actually have any phone in the vicinity. But after absorbing the sombrero lamp-shaded ambience and a pitcher of sangria, though, nobody should be complaining about places to go or things to do.

Hours: Sun-Thurs 10am-9pm, Fri-Sat 10am-10pm
Crowd Age: Varied
Music: No live music
Décor: Mexico's most colorful imports, saddle bar stools
Signature Drink: Sangria
Games/Amenities: No

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From the June 21-27, 2001 issue of Metro, Silicon Valley's Weekly Newspaper.

Copyright © 2001 Metro Publishing Inc. Metroactive is affiliated with the Boulevards Network.

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