IMAGE: Matt D’Annunzio
The New Year’s bacchanal has subsided—leaving only a headache and the rubble of broken resolutions—and it is no longer legal to put match to cigarette while sipping your rye. What reason is left to go to the bar? Here’s one: The Slammer (500 SE 8th Ave., 232-6504) still has its Christmas lights hanging in the windows (if past years are any indication, they’ll keep ’em shining through February), and as the holidays fade from memory, the smear of twinkling decorations will make this snug dive resemble a kind of abiding Candyland. Another reason: cheap booze. Pints of Kokanee get passed across the horseshoe counter for $2, while a Beam-and-Coke gets poured strong for $4.50. (If you’re wondering whether this is the kind of bar that will mix you a specialty cocktail, consider that this is the kind of bar where the men’s room does not have a door.) Even after several refurbishings, the picnic-table decor still resembles a strip-mall Mexican restaurant that has forgotten to serve Mexican food (except on taco Wednesdays!). But even after the lights go out, the Slammer will remain a corner bar so enchanting you may be moved to stand on an outdoor table and sing along to “Rocket Man” on the loudspeakers. After which the regulars will come outside and congratulate you.