Six Arms Offers Fistfuls of Food and Booze

By Celina Kareiva

The Place: Six Arms, 300 E. Pike St., 223-1698

The Hours: 4-6 p.m. happy hour daily; 10 p.m. and later happy-hour deals on food

The Digs: In many ways, Six Arms Pub feels more like a cafe than a neighborhood watering hole. Except for a widescreen TV in the corner and a healthy selection of handcrafted ales brewed onsite, you wouldn't know it from the trendy coffee shops of Capitol Hill. The best thing about Six Arms is its decor--a mix of your grandmother's attic and an earthy-hippie interior.

You find your eyes wandering the walls for odd knickknacks, wood carvings, and the sorts of framed sketches that take on a second life after being shelved at an antique store. Sectioning off the bar from the rest of the establishment is a knobby railing of pipe patchwork. It dovetails into an altar-like entrance at one corner of the bar. To the left is a spectacular chandelier that resembles a starburst of light. There's a spiritual feel to the artwork, probably because the location mascot is a six-armed Hindu goddess.

The Deal: Six Arms' menu is bar food with a gourmet twist--the burgers come with the option of tater tots or fries; the hummus plate includes a side of freshly cut vegetables; and the salads are topped with thin strings of pickled onion. Six Arms is actually part of a chain of McMenamin's breweries scattered throughout Washington and Oregon. So during happy hour, all ales are available for $3.25 a pint. The Ruby, admittedly a very girly beer, is particularly good. It's packed with over 60 pounds of raspberries, and its reddish tint evokes its name.

While the front entrance clearly states that no one under the age of 21 is allowed into the bar, Six Arms manages to blend a sophisticated taste with a family-friendly ambiance. Several kids pick at plates of Cajun tater tots in the roomy booths, and a modified version of the main menu offers bite-sized burgers and extra-gooey grilled cheese for the little ones.

The Verdict: Six Arms is an urban space for the archetypal Seattleite. I like to think that the decor of a bar serves as a reflection of the people who frequent it. And if that's the case, then Six Arms' regulars are an eclectic bunch.

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