|Blackies by the Sea bar in Newport has interesting ideas of decor.|
Deep in the very red heart of central Orange County
's clogged arterial domain, dive bar culture is alive and well. Although some are more hidden than others, you might be surprised what lurks within the dark crevices between Newport
and Santa Ana
. Those of you who never learned to associate PBR and jukeboxes with good ole' Newps are in for a grimy surprise. After all, every town in OC has it's share of the 99 percent looking to get wasted on the cheap. Ladies and gents, here are our top five dives for central Orange County
5. Goat Hill Tavern
|Goat Hill Tavern in Costa Mesa|
Located across the street from the ever-trendy (and under construction) Triangle Square in Costa Mesa, your feet will crunch beneath the carpet of peanut shells the minute you walk into the Goat Hill Tavern. A typical stop on the list for the younger dive bar crowd, this dive seems to be as trendy as the lights are bright. Drinks range in the $3 to $7 range and most people have smiles on their faces as they sway and crunch their way to the bar to order, well most likely, a beer. Noted for having 140 beers on tap, this place blasts The Cure and other Euro classics over their jukebox relentlessly.
Apparently, this is the stop for the Hash runner crowd. Male participants will try to convince you it's a good idea to run from bar to bar in flip flops after downing pitchers of beer. Do it.
4. Blackies by the Sea
Noted for their prime location across the street from Newport Pier, (a surf spot is named after the bar), this dive's local claim to fame is serving the coldest beer on tap in Newport prices ranging between $3 and $7. No really, they have a temperature gauge that hangs above the door and it usually teeters between 27 and 28 degrees. This feature isn't the only thing that makes their decor, uh, unique. A 10-foot, 50 year-old Hammerhead Shark along with old license plates, 15 flat screen televisions and even an old PGA golf bag with clubs intact decorate the walls. This bar's small but mighty character shows that, yes, even in Newport, you can get shit-faced for a decent price.
Ladies Beware: Salty old men and longboarders.