The Bar Belle: The Garage

Originally Published 09/16/99

Bar: The Garage

Where: 1214B 18th St., NW

Crowd: It’s new, so it hasn’t found its niche yet. Everything from boarder kids to sexagenarians (get your mind out of the gutter, that means people who are 60 years old) right now.

Getting in: It looks like they will have a lot of all ages shows, but you better have an ID (a real one) if you want to drink.

Prices: Not great, but not horrible – beer on tap is affordable. Most things are what you’d expect for a concert club, competitive with the 9:30 Club.

Food: They have pizza.

Dancing: Moshing and jumping for the good acts. No real dancing, except maybe to the songs played between sets.

Pick-ups: It’ll depend on the night. Better acts draw better pick-ups.

Pluses: Cool atmosphere and you can walk there from campus.

Minuses: It gets really loud just about everywhere inside and there’s very little room to see the live acts.

The Bar Belle was ecstatic when she saw that a new concert club was opening up just a few blocks away from campus. Now, you don’t have to Metro into the bowels of the Northeast to see a rock or alternative show at the 9:30 Club – you can just hike over to The Garage.

The Garage already has a big slate of shows, mostly up-and-coming artists. The biggest act so far has been Baltimore’s Jimmie’s Chicken Shack. Unfortunately for the club, it probably won’t be able to schedule acts much bigger than that because it is a small venue – the areas where you can see and hear the performers are a bit cramped.

The coolest thing about the club is undoubtedly the ambiance. Nestled in a place where you’d never think a club could never exist, The Garage has charm galore. Gas pumps outside tell people where to find it, and an actual garage door reveals the stage when each act begins its set.

There are two bars on different levels, which makes it easy to get a drink without pushing your way through a mass of humanity. The prices are nothing to write home about, but they are not out of line with similar venues of that size. The Bar Belle was brave enough to try the house specialty, Garage Ale, and she happily recommends it.

If you’re looking for something to do more than just get bombed at a bar or a club, The Garage is a great alternative not too far from home.

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