Is Bob & Barbara’s the Most Iconic Bar In Pennsylvania? Yahoo Says Yes
We love Bob & Barbara’s, that classic Philadelphia dive bar at 1509 South Street. Bob & Barbara’s is the originator and home of the Pabst Blue Ribbon and Jim Beam “Special,” the city’s longest running drag show, a kickass karaoke night, and a diverse clientele ranging from neighborhood oldheads to bike messengers to gentrifiers to Wharton students (ugh) and everyone in between. But is Bob & Barbara’s the most iconic bar in the entire state of Pennsylvania?
Well, that’s exactly what Yahoo says in a list called “The Most Iconic Bar In Every State (and DC)” that the website released earlier this week.
And just what the hell is an iconic bar? Yahoo explains in its methodology that for a bar to be considered iconic, it must have been around since 1990 or before (Bob & Barbara’s first opened as Bob & Barbara’s in 1969), it must be famous, and it has to be a place that people love to go to.
The Yahoo iconic bars list contains lots of bars you’ve never heard of in states that you’ve probably never been to. The Ice House in Yankton, South Dakota. The Sip N’ Dip Lounge in Great Falls, Montana. Pengilly’s Saloon in Boise, Idaho. And then there’s Bob & Barbara’s, which we’re pretty sure that the hard drinkers in Yankton, Great Falls and Boise have never heard of either, unless they subscribe to Details or GQ or other magazines that have given Bob & Barbara’s national press.
Here’s how Yahoo justifies the inclusion of Bob & Barbara’s on the list:
A bar that, in 2015, offers a can of PBR and a shot of Beam for $3.50 (called the “Citywide Special”) is a bar we want to hang out in. And Philadelphians have been doing just that for 40+ years, likely to make the last 40+ years of Eagles losses go down easier. And while South Street has been injected with shiny new businesses over the past few years, this dimly lit, disco-ball’d dive keeps the old spirit alive with a disco ball above the bar, live music (who knew Philly had a “Country Night”?), drag shows, and karaoke.
Do you agree or disagree? What are the other contenders? And surely the good folks in Pittsburgh must have something to say about all this.