I look for bars most often based on recommendations. Most often, those recommendations point me to a great dive, a hipster bar, a historic locale, a roadhouse or a neighborhood joint.
My desire to travel west has often been blunted by experiences traveling west. So if one finds a dearth of recommendations from me from out that way, it’s because I’ve had a dearth of recommendations given to me. That changed recently when a bartender from another review (who shall remain nameless) pointed me toward 108th Street and Therapy Bar and Grill.
This area just north of the intersection with Q Street is a brash mix of strip malls surrounded by additions and neighborhoods with names such as Applewood Heights, Brookhaven and Mockingbird Hills West.
Outside Therapy, there is a large parking lot with no end of spaces. The lot is big enough that parties are held in it four times a year, according to Therapy’s website. There is a patio on the west exterior for taking in night air. Inside, Therapy is spacious, with high and low seating available, and such features as darts, seven TVs and a Breathalyzer.
I had a Dale’s Pale Ale at the suggestion of my friendly bartender Carl, who proved to be another great feature. In addition to being gregarious, Carl had his hands full with a customer whose personality was somewhat more persistent than the room was wanting to accommodate. Long story short, Carl had the patience of a saint. In a professional aside, he noted that people have their problems today, and being more tolerant than the average person is practically in the job description. Kudos to Carl. Tip him well.
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Taps include Bud Light, Budweiser, Dale’s Pale Ale, Michelob Ultra, Blue Moon, Leinenkugel’s Summer Shandy and a rotating seasonal local tap. Therapy also has on hand 46 bottles, from just about every domestic favorite you might crave to craft locals like Kros Strain’s Fairy Nectar IPA and Infusion’s Vanilla Bean.
Therapy has a host of signature drinks, including The Therapist, Tropical Zoloft, Delusion, Psychotic Rage, Anger Management, Loaded Lithium, Compulsion, Panic Attack and many more. There’s a daily Bartender’s Choice Drink of the Day.
Therapy’s kitchen yields most of your bar favorites, but most notable to me were the fried cheese curds and gizzards. You don’t get those everywhere. Kitchen hours are 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and 5 to 10 p.m. Monday through Saturday, and noon to 8 p.m. Sunday.
Happy hours are 3 to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday and all day Sunday, featuring 50 cents off domestic bottles, draws and wells. Also on “Sunday Funday,” get one pound of boneless chicken wings and a domestic pitcher for $15. From 7 to 11 p.m. on Tuesdays, Therapy hosts an open-mic night. The weekends feature live acoustic music.
When out west, get yourself some Therapy. Hope to see you there.
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The Crescent Roadhouse Bar and Grill in Crescent, Iowa, is a dive bar with a good kitchen. It's largely a domestics-in-the-bottle kind of place. Blue Moon, Lagunitas and Corona are about as hip as you’re gonna get. Click here to read more.
There is likely room in your schedule somewhere for The Cabin’s happy hours. They last from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday. Click here to read more.
Pour Craft Beer & Spirits has two dozen brews on tap from local favorites like La Vista’s Kros Strain Brewing, Omaha’s Brickway Brewery & Distillery and fellow Lincoln newbie Cosmic Eye Brewing. Click here to read more.
Lincoln’s Pub sits where Dixie Quicks used to in Council Bluffs' historic 100 Block. It is turning into a worthy successor. Click here to read more.
Cosmic Eye Brewing opened in east Lincoln fall of 2018. Its location makes it unique for a couple of reasons — for one, it’s the only Lincoln brewery in a former laser tag place, and the only brewery in the neighborhood. Click here to read more.
Pat and Mike’s has Chiefs games, cheap tacos and arcade classics like “Ms. Pacman” and “Frogger.” Click here to read more.
As nice as it might be to go to a bar where “everybody knows your name,” occasionally it’s pleasant to go to a bar where no one knows who you are, what you do or where you’re from. The District offers that. Click here to read more.
Florence's New Frontier is a great dive. It is quaint, friendly, out of the way and time-worn, but clean and comfortable enough to exceed one’s most reasonably tempered expectations. Click here to read more.
Barley's, a saloon-style bar in Council Bluffs, offers 30 brews on tap, a friendly staff and an "epic" amount of parking. Click here to read more.
Not all dives are cut from the same cloth. George’s Tavern in Blair hits all the right notes for socializing on the DL and has what discriminating tastes aspire to, if not actually settle for, in a dive. Click here to read more.
Green Flash has some traditional brewpub offerings like wings, of course. But, in general, the eatery specializes in slightly more sophisticated eats, with more fresh vegetables and fewer fried foods. Click here to read more.
The Spillway in Council Bluffs is always family-friendly. There is an ATM, pool, darts, 11 TVs, free Wi-Fi and — the best idea ever — a Breathalyzer by the door reminding you to stay safe and never drive buzzed. Click here to read more.
You can enjoy drinking with strangers at Rathskeller Bier Haus, including a few real Germans. Wall art consists of European beer signs, a boar’s head and a reproduction of Berlin Wall graffiti. The back garden will still nurture you once warm weather returns. Click here to read more.
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