A blog for better streets and public spaces in Portland, Maine.

Friday, October 12, 2007

The Greatest Bar in Portland

I'm not ashamed admit it - I'm a huge fan of the Greatest Bar in Portland. I don't know what it is about this bar, but I know of no better place in town to get a bit tipsy, listen to some top quality live music, or chat up the loveliest Indy Babes you ever did see. It's cozy like The Bramhall Pub but hip like The White Heart. Unlike The White Heart, though, the Greatest Bar in Portland has more of a boudoirish opium den vibe to it. Yes, this bar is actually better than The White Heart. In fact, this bar equals and surpasses the old Free Street Taverna or Ale House in its awesomeness. I mean, there are rumors Eggbot will soon have a regular gig here. Eggbot! (Does that mean the Greatest Bar in Portland is equal to the legendary Stone Coast - Eggbot's old haunt? I wasn't in town in those days but I'm still going to say yes.) Meanwhile, this place has the best selection of psychedelic music on any jukebox in town - not just your everyday Velvet Underground or Jefferson Airplane - I'm talkin' H.P. Lovecraft and other obscure groups here. Oh, and the jukebox selections are on vinyl. I'm sure I'm not doing the GBiP the proper justice it deserves in my description of it. I wish I could go there tonight, but I can't. Want to know why?
Because what should be the Greatest Bar in Portland is actually a parking lot. The obscure lane in the picture runs from York Street down to Commercial Street next to a place called the Cannery building. What great potential empty lot across the way has. Alas, it goes to waste as automobile storage. Piffle! Portland can do better. Someday our fair Portinsula will get it's density back. Gone will be the parking lots and parking garages. In their place will stand corner grocery stores, bus shelters that are actually pleasant, places to buy underwear (just for you, Kevin), and, yes, the Greatest Bar in Portland.