|Cap Hansen's Tavern - Bellingham, WA|
For better or worse, the go-to dive bar in Bellingham. Cheap but strong drinks, bartenders' attitudes that run the gamut from stereotypically surly to efficiently enabling, the classic Bukowsky-esque assortment of barflys and a surreal decor that is half vintage beer sign, half paintings of monkeys dressed in sharp suits drinking mugs of beer.
I love Cap's on a Sunday afternoon after the Seahawks have lost, when the crowd of mostly lonely males is / are drunk, sad and irritable. Then the bartender turns the TV to some bad 80s movie and someone plays Purple Rain on the jukebox. And everything wrong in the world seems endurable, if not entirely right.
Avoid the weekends when it fills with Western Students learning how to drink and throw-up. Try the free popcorn; it's the healthiest thing you can put in your mouth at Cap's (mostly). On Sundays nights, there is one of the best, raucous - and often poignantly talented -karaokes in town. The signature drink is the Peruvian Bear Fucker. Don't ask, just drink.
Try a shot of Hussong tequila and a Miller Genuine Draft, the champagne of beers with the cognac of tequilas. Cheers!