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Lodge 559

Lodge 559 is a new bar located in Little Italy. With groove, funk and hip hop nights most Fridays and Saturdays, Lodge 559 also occasionally holds themed nights, like '90s dance parties or tequila showcases.

I visited Lodge 559 just before 11pm on a Friday night. The bar often offers free cover before a certain time depending on the night (cover is normally $5 on Friday and $10 on Saturday). If that means getting there a bit earlier and playing The Simpsons: Tapped Out on your phone while bar staff look over in pity in order to save some cash, I'm all in.

The bar is ( surprise! ) lodge-themed, with lots of wood in unexpected places (no double entendre intended), large busts upon which to gaze (small double entendre intended) and snowshoes (this shouldn't even be a double entendre, but it is, because we as humans are terribly flawed, and please don't ever Urban Dictionary this term).

The space is on the smaller side, with the actual bar is in the middle of the room and one smaller bar off to one side. The dance floor and DJ booth don't take up much space,saving room for ample seating surrounding the bar and dance floor. Just one of the many tables was reserved for bottle service - nice for those of us who want to take a break from shuffling awkwardly to the beat without having to get several friends together and convince them Gail Vaz-Oxlade -style that bottle service is a worthy investment and overall money-saving technique.

In addition to free cover before 11pm on the night we visited, rail drinks were on special for $3 before 11. My companions and I each ordered a vodka soda. For a vodka soda, it was pretty average: vodka, soda, ice and lime. For a $3 vodka soda, it was fantastic: vodka, soda, ice, and even lime! The bartender was kind enough to warn us right before the clock struck 11 so we could order another round (rail drinks are regularly $6), something that was much appreciated.

It's also worth mentioning that the resident Friday DJ, DJ Spence Diamonds , was great at playing to his audience. Often, clubs can be well-thought out and well-executed, and the music can be great in its own right, but the two are so disparate that it creates a weird atmosphere (for example, loud rap in a bar where most people are sitting and talking, or late-'90s hits in a club of twenty-year-olds). In this case, the type of music worked well with the space and the crowd, which made for a great time.

By the time I left Lodge 559, I realized I had only spent $15 (no cover, two $3 vodka sodas, one $6 vodka soda, $3 in tips) over the course of the entire night. With these prices (assuming you take advantage of the free cover window and cheap drinks window), a night out at Lodge 559 is similar in cost to a night at a dive bar - except Lodge 559 has doors on the bathroom stalls, and the animals are faux and for decor, instead of real and rabies-carrying. This alone makes Lodge 559 worth returning to - who wouldn't want a Meat Lovers experience for Hot 'n' Ready prices? Gail Vaz-Oxlade would be proud.


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