March 2- 8, 2006
It's Where We Drink
12 Steps Down
831 Christian St., 215-238-0379
Everyone turns to look when someone walks in because the door dumps you right into the bar, which is really just a wide room with low ceilings. A pay phone and beat-up cigarette machine guard the entrance.
The pool table is busy on even the slowest nights, and a projection screen TV takes up the entire right side of the back wall. When I swung by on a Sunday night, the Olympic cross-country competition was under way. The crowd didn't seem to notice. Two girls were comparing the size of their subs. A guy with sleeve tattoos chatted up a girl in a snow hat. People seemed to know each other in that saw-you-here-last-week kind of way.
A rear kitchen cranks out the food, which is mostly hot sandwiches and fried appetizers. There are also four varieties of hummus -- perfect for washing down your can of Pabst Blue.
Best of all, the beer's cheap and the shots are generous. And that's as good as it gets when you're paying your own bills.