Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Houlihan's: Why Addison Sucks

Once when I was riding the DART redline I over heard a guy from New Jersey (who had moved here) tell a crowd of tourists that Addison is where its at.

I have a softspot for the Jersey folks, so I assumed he was right.

Over the years I have developed strange and mixed feelings about Addison. I love Dunn's brother coffee there, where I armed myself for many a UTD college exam.

I like the Addison Improv, the comedy club, and have been meaning to write a review of it for a while now.

I like the Flying Saucer, and its beer collection which makes a beer snob like me weep tears of joy. But overall I hate the whole Addison vibe. Perhaps I love-hate it, in the sense that it gives me a weird sense of Dallas snobbery while I reject everything that it stands for.

Addison is a mall. It is a giant fucking mall that happens to be laid out on streets. Namely Beltline, it hugs the Dallas North Toll Road from the 635 to Beltline, and it borders Richardson and Farmer's Branch.

So because people get told on the train that Addison is the best DFW has to offer, I feel like I have to be town crier on this one.

Addison is great for people who are completely out of touch with rock and roll and want to fake it for a night. Addison is great for people who have $50 to spend a night on entertainment.

Addison may have a sexy high society angle, but I see this kind of high society the way I see lawyers and doctors on Harley's :as totally fake!

Houlihans is an Addison bar which truly embodies these failures.

My friends and I went to Houlihan's to celebrate a birthday, which at most bars would have been an excuse to milk us for all kinds of money and festivity. Not at Houlihan's, from the moment we arrived we were treated like the help who had accidently wondered in from the street.

I was already laughing and skeptical from the second I went in, knowing the drinks would be expensive, but then here's where it gets funny.

We go in and ask about happy hour.

It is happy hour, but happy hour is only available at the bar.

So we are given a table for our birthday party, and at this table we pay full price for drinks. Or we can get up and go to the bar and pay half price.

Most of us do go to the bar to pay half price, and everyone should. But I feel the whole time that we are there like the waitress feels like we are a nuisance. This is confirmed when at some point she says that she doesn't think the bar tender will like it if we all go to the bar.

Well whoop-dee-fucking-doo.

The place cost a fortune. Even with happy hour drink prices, and had nothing to offer in return.

No music, no art, just the bourgioise experience of drinking in Addison.

And for the record I am a seasoned drinker in both Hollywood and Manhattan, Addison ain't shit!

DFW is full of great bars.

And if I wanted to have a drinking experience carefully tailored by corporate experience I could at least go to the House of Blues and hear some music while it happens.

This place was like Chilli's, only twice as expensive, and it thought it was a bar which Paul McCartney might show up (but it wasn't).

I shouldn't condemn all of Addison due to the negative experience I had at Houlihan's but it does feed my prejudice.

I go to Addison, and I feel like I am in a 10 square mile mall. And due to my philosophy that a good time in the Metroplex should not be expensive, the ritzy vibe that I get from so many establishments in Addison drive me crazy. For example, I am sure that Fogo de Chao; the Brazilian restaurant in Addison, is fabulous. But at about $30 (and up) a plate its out of range for me. There are many such establishments clustered in Addison and places like Houlihan's have prices that are just as high and nothing to offer.

DFW is generally riddled with places like this.

I could say much the same about the West End or Uptown Dallas.

It just irritates me when I know so many good times, overflowing with art and creativity, are available for much more reasonable prices all over the Metroplex.

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