June 29th, 2010
Liberty Station: Red, White and Cool
Like Washington Crossing the Delaware, Liberty Station is bringing life, liberty and the pursuit of a douchebag-free environment to Washington Ave, one craft beer at a time. Opening less than a month ago, Liberty Station is a haven for people looking to meet up with friends while sipping on quality cocktails or craft brews without all the pomp and circumstance of it’s not so distant neighbors. The challenge to you, Houston, is: ask not what they can do for you, but instead, ask how you can help them perpetuate their cool laid back environs.
It’s a Friday night and most of my fellow loopsters have plans later in the evening, but since it’s been a particularly long and hectic week, we decide that a celebratory beer is in order. You would think that with our collective minds, we wouldn’t have a problem deciding where to meet, but you would be wrong. Luckily, Paul remembers that Liberty Station has just opened. With our curiosity piqued, we decide to congregate at the newly opened bar before heading out on the town.
Located on the Washington Corridor close to downtown, Liberty Station isn’t in the congested part of the strip. That presents both opportunities and challenges. Parking isn’t much of a problem as there are a few spaces in front of the bar and a vacant lot right next to the building, which was a perfect spot for my truck. There was also street parking, something you are hard pressed to find further west. Being in an isolated location means that Liberty Station doesn’t offer the convenience of bar hopping. Depending on what you’re looking for, this can be a blessing or a curse. During our visit, I found that it allowed the bar to serve as a destination where groups could meet up and get away from the insanity further up the street.
When I arrive, most of our crew is already seated at the wooden picnic tables closest to the street. It’s an eclectic group, with significant others and friends of friends, but the casual atmosphere and bench seating lead to an incorporating atmosphere that has us all feeling like old friends before long.
Walking up to the building, it’s easy to see the garage that formerly inhabited the building. Two big bay doors open the bar to the outside and a covered patio stretches in front of the other side of the building. Wooden tables offer places to sit in the shade and people are playing cornhole in front of the open garage doors. I make my way inside to order a beer and am met with an unexpected shock. Instead of what you’d expect from a garage turned bar, the inside is surprisingly cool. Sporting exposed brick and an eclectic group of vintage seating and couches, the inside feels like an old school rec room. Add the juke box and arcade game, and you are set. Fully expecting to find the typical lite beer options as I approach the bar, I’m pleased with both the number and quality of the choices. Talking with the bartender, I realize that this isn’t your typical bar. They take both their beer and liquor seriously. After being awed by their selection, I settle on a Left Hand and head back to our gathering.
As we sit on the porch, the atmosphere is laid back and the other patrons, whether they are rocking suits or sundresses, seem friendly. After a long week of work and writing and drinking, it’s nice to sit back and relax. It’s hot, but as evening descends, there’s a slight breeze, which I find relaxing. Between the conversation of the group, I manage to watch snippets of the Astros game on the TV facing our table.
Sitting at the picnic table on the outside patio, someone said, “if I opened a bar, this is what it would be like.” I second that motion wholeheartedly. From it’s open and relaxing atmosphere to it’s embracing of the local neighborhood, Liberty Station is everything great about what the Washington Corridor should be, and thus, it thumbs it’s nose at all the scenesters who are making a mockery of the places further up the street. If you’re looking for a place to spend the Fourth of July, why not celebrate our country’s liberty at the Station?
Where –2101 Washington Ave., Houston, TX 77007 (View Map)
What – Part Ice House, Part Lounge, All Good.
Wear – It’s the land of the free, wear what you want
How Much – It won’t break the bank
When – Monday thru Sunday Noon to 2AM
Web – Facebook