Looking for a cocktail lounge near me? Brown’s Towne Lounge is a cocktail destination in downtown Salem,Oregon.
It doesn’t matter which way you go; you’re sure to drink something tasty, especially with a menu like this. Like beer? Besides the few taps — all local beers — Brown’s Towne Lounge stocks a variety, with almost any style available, and most brewed in Oregon. More of a wine drinker? Try reds and whites, with a few sparkling.
For cocktails, options range from the Martini, to the Mojito, described as “consisting primarily of Rum (or some other spirit), water, crushed or shaved ice, and fresh mint.”
Like a lot of drinking age adults, I’m always searching for a cocktail lounge near me, it’s a big part of the fun, wherever I go! A pretty cut and dry Google search, but what ARE we looking for, really? As a lifelong cocktail lounge bartender, I’ve got a secret tip or two to share.
Beyond top notch service, even beyond delicious cocktails, I want to address the core of what we all want from a cocktail lounge. We want to feel like we are in capable, caring hands that we can trust. We want to relax, sink into that all-too-hard-to-find safe feeling with a buzzy beverage, drop our edge for a bit, hide from the predatory outside world. Walk into the right cocktail lounge and you’ll know what I mean, it’s a parallel universe!
Everything goes into creating it, even though it may look effortless. I like to think of it as top-down company culture, and it is, but really, it’s just authentic people working as bartenders, who genuinely care about ALL people, and truly serving them, with a kind and humble heart.
Let’s break it down.
Yes, the bathrooms should appear cared for. Yes, we hope for cleanliness and no funky smells elsewhere in the cocktail lounge. No one wants to think what sticky floors, or sticky anything, are a sign of!
Does the beverage program and presentation appear fresh and thought through? It should go without saying: the bartenders should know their products, be prepared to sell them, and know how to move faster when necessary.
It takes more than that, but how can you know? Watch the bartenders.
And what you might be surprised to know is that YES! The best bartenders, the only kind you should want, should be visibly happy to see you, and delighted to serve you, as long as they legally can, whether they know you or not. (unless you’re impossibly drunk, angry and/or belligerent, that’s for another “secret tips” post.)
Have you ever felt like a table being turned, that rushed kind of service that just shouts “Next!”? Have you ever found yourself unacknowledged, finding it difficult to make eye contact with a bartender?
Have you ever had an empty glass and the bartender walks by you several times without noticing and asking if you’d like another? Of course it helps to know the bartender, but it should never define the service.
Neither should the amount you tip, that might surprise you too. The best bartenders consider giving good service a badge of honor whether you tip or not. It’s their job. Those bartenders collect a cared for clientele that does tip, and they won’t ever let getting stiffed by you wreck the rest of that! Ever had that bartender who expresses displeasure at your tip? Hmmmm. Grumpy, surly, snappy bartenders make less tips, and then they’re grumpy, surly, snappy. It’s a vicious cycle that they don’t understand, and indicative of so much more. So search cocktail lounge near me, find your bartenders, and only lounge where you feel cared for.