Thursday, April 26, 2007

Bar Review: Truck

Truck is at the corner of Folsom and 15th, right around the corner from the boyfriend’s pad, in the space that was formerly occupied by Wilde Oscars. This is one of the longest-enduring bars in San Francisco, complete with the original wooden and mirrored bar. It feels like a comfortable neighborhood joint where you can sit and hang out with your friends, have some grub, shoot some pool, and generally relax in a kitschy but not overwhelming environment.

The truck theme is carried through with almost relentless detail, from the mudflap banners above the doorway to the side-mirrors in the bathroom to the hub cabs on the ceiling fans. Keeping with the basic pubness of the space, Truck also serves haute truck stop cuisine like hamburgers and chicken strips. As someone who spent his youth in an area where going to the truck stop for Sunday after-church dinner was a big deal, I had a hard time sorting the kitsch of Truck from the kitsch of an actual truck stop. With all of the over-the-top butchness of this space I feared that it would simply be The Lone Star with food, but the crowd on a Wednesday night at 9.30 was pretty diverse and “neighborhoody.” They’ve kept the interior layout of Wilde Oscar’s in place, with high tables against one wall and a second back room with a pool table. The lighting is all brothel (or tail-light) red, and the music was decent with indie-rock leanings (there may have been a jukebox, but I was a bit distracted at the time to notice). There was a nice selection of beers on tap, and a pitcher of pilsner ran about $15.

The location is a bit out-of-the-way from the usual bar crawls, but I think it is a place I will return to for both the food (I always complain that more bars should serve some kind of eats), and for a relaxed drink. I’ll also be curious to see what kind of “gay bar” it actually turns into, since it’s a bit too “themed” for the typical Castro boy, and maybe not “themed” enough for the SoMa crowd. Perhaps it will just be a space in the middle for anybody who wants to shoot some pool and drink a pitcher with friends, and maybe get a little flirt on under the red lights.

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