The scene: Bombay Bicycle Club’s owners admit the bar is a tribute to watering holes in much larger, and arguably hipper, cities like Los Angeles. This appreciation manifests itself through damask wallpaper, weathered vintage furniture, pool table light fixtures fashioned from bicycles and bathrooms covered in graffiti art. BBC, as its regulars call it, is a rock ’n’ roll bar that frequently serves its alcohol with live music from both local and touring acts, and otherwise has its hip musical playlist set to random.
What I ordered: The stock of $8 40-ounce beers that grace the beer coolers at BBC was tempting, but I was out on a school night and decided a 12-ounce bottle of Red Stripe for $3.75 was a bit more responsible. The Jamaican beer would have been a perfect choice for a warmer outing to BBC’s patio, but certainly made me yearn for the return of balmier temps.
What I saw: The BBC has an all-season patio separated from the bar by sliding glass doors that are often left open, creating one large space. The glass windows that line three sides of the patio have been removed for the season. The view, one of a parking lot and strip of businesses, is nothing to brag about, but the enormity of the space easily makes up for the lack of scenery.
The crowd is diverse, serving as a beer- and whiskey-fueled home to white collar workers, tattooed punk rockers and everyone in between. Though the patio is certainly a haven for smokers, the sheer size and openness of the space attracts nonsmokers in equal numbers.
Why you should go: Tuesday nights feature a blues jam that includes free barbecue, and Thursday nights have local bands duking it out for a $1,000 prize. But the real star here is the patio, the perfect place to spend a warm-weather evening.
Bombay Bicycle Club
Find it: 8410 Hickman Road, Clive
Hours: 4 p.m.-2 a.m. Monday through Thursday; 3 p.m.-2 a.m. Friday through Sunday
Info: 270-6274; bombaydsm.com
Patio highlights: It’s enormous and comfortable year-round.
Best for: Live music, 40-ounce beers and a large selection of draft brews