Back home there was such an awesome bar scene. Hubby and I had so many places that we liked to hang out, and a lot of them depended on our mood. Did we want something with fancy cocktails? Something showing the big game? Something with bar games? Pretty much Omaha had a bar to fit our wants and needs. Since moving to KC, we’ve struggled with finding a bar that we feel like we can walk into and feel completely comfortable at.
In Omaha, we had a little dive bar right by our house called The White House Bar. From the outside, this bar wasn’t really anything special. There were usually people standing outside smoking, but inside everyone was really nice and conversational, and the beer was cheap and cold.
We also would frequent Old Chicago, which was also right by our home. Hubby and I love craft beer and trying new things, so this bar was great for that. They always had something new on tap, and we got to know the bartenders pretty well, so we were often treated to multiple free samples and a good chat.
Thursdays our favorite brewery in Omaha had bingo, so we’d try to make time for that. Infusion had the best beer in Omaha (in my humble opinion) and was always such a warm, welcoming place. My friend Rebecca and I stumbled upon it during Omaha Beer Week and played their inaugural game of bingo. It’s been a favorite meet-up ever since.
But, since we’ve moved to Kansas City, finding places that feel like home is hard. For a while, Hubby and I were living on the Kansas side while our house was being built. While driving around a cute little area one afternoon, we saw this bar called The Keyhole Tavern. It looked cute and divey, so we decided to stop in. Even though it was 3:00 pm on a Tuesday, the place was packed with everyone watching the Royals game. We found the last table available, ordered a couple of beers and stayed for a while.
We were so excited! After a month of searching, we had finally found a great bar! The regulars were really nice, the beer was dirt cheap and it had a really good vibe. We knew it would be really far from our permanent home, but for now this seemed like a great bar to call home. The next weekend, we had gone out for dinner, and decided to stop by our new favorite bar, The Keyhole. This time it was a Saturday night, and we took our chances at finding a spot. Again, the place was packed and we bellied up to the bar on the last two open bar stools. Everyone again was really friendly, that is until the bartender came up to us. This was a different bartender from last time. The first one was young, pretty and friendly. This lady was old and mean.
At first she just stared at us for an uncomfortable moment. Finally I spoke up and ordered a beer. She kept staring. “Do you have a membership card?” she growled. It took me a minute to process what she was asking. I was at a bar, not Costco, what membership card? I told her that I didn’t understand. She said we weren’t allowed to drink in the bar unless we were card-carrying members. I looked at my husband. Neither of us were understanding. There were bars that made you buy a membership? We explained we had just moved to the area from out-of-state and didn’t quite understand what she was saying. This is when she got really nasty. “If you have a problem with this, the manager is right over there and I’m not afraid to go get him!” My husband told her that wasn’t necessary, we just literally don’t understand. She told us it was the law that if a bar doesn’t sell food, it has run on a membership basis.
Now people were staring and I was getting incredibly embarrassed. We asked if that was a law just on the weekends. “We were here Tuesday and there was no mention of this,” my husband said. That’s when she called my husband a liar because she was working on Tuesday, so how could we possibly be there on Tuesday? We explained it was at 3:00 in the afternoon and that seemed to deflate her ego since her shift started at 6. To diffuse the situation, and to just end this conversation with the saltiest person I had met since the move, we told her we’d buy a membership.
Her face lit up like we just gave her a huge tip. “Well in that case, I”ll get you guys signed up!” Hubby and I bought a beer each, sucked them down and ran out as fast we could. It was horrible. Even if we lived near there, I would never return to that bar for that horrible woman.
Turns out, Kansas has super weird and outdated alcohol laws and apparently that’s one of them. Now that we are on the Missouri side, the laws are much more up-to-date (thank God), but we still are having trouble finding our home away from home. We’ve found an Old Chicago we really enjoy, but it’s a bit farther than our old one. We’ll keep searching and trying out new things, which is part of the fun of moving, right? At least we got a good story out of everything!