The Argonaut, Like a Phoenix from the Ashes

The Argonaut has sailed some rough waters.  Over stormy seas it has come and hopefully it has since arrived safe in harbor.

I enjoy the cut of the Argonaut’s jib, from its neighborhood-first vibe to impishly nautical atmosphere.  Also, it’s fun to order the bar’s own Pirate’s Booty Ale and the inevitable ensuing clever to not-so-clever wordplay that ensues.

The Argonaut docked at H and 15th Streets, NE, well nigh six years ago.  As the first of the new restaurants to flood the area, the Argonaut holds a sense of pride in its identity and its neighborhood.  The upstairs room is available for rent and the restaurant is constantly hosting neighborhood meet and greets.  I recently attended a fund/awareness-raiser for the the campaign of Sekou Biddle (may it rest in peace).

What gave the Argonaut this deep emotional mooring?  Like any weathered sailor, it is kinder once it’s been on the rough seas for a few squalls.  In June 2010 the bar was damaged by and electrical fire in the downstairs bar.  Once the restaurant had shut down, the community raised money to set it to rights again.  But even after the money had been raised, the bar was subject to more vandalization and theft.  They even broke into the gumball machines!

What was the great hope that brought the Argonaut through the storm?  The fish tacos of course!  Man, those things are amazing.  The Argonaut, though birthed as a dive bar, has grown into a family-friendly, even brunch-worthy, neighborhood restaurant and bar.  Almost every other table on the patio this weekend had a baby present.

Even the men’s bathroom has a changing table.  After the fire, the restaurant was restructured, allowing for more space downstairs, an even better patio, and an inside-outside bar.

For reasonable prices, you can enjoy gourmet pub fare such as the fish and chips, Hawaiian style chicken wings, and of course, those famous fish tacos.  So pick a sunny day (shouldn’t be too hard with this forecast), some friends (or attractive strangers) and start with a pitcher of Booty at the Argonaut.


One Comment Add yours

  1. francine says:

    the steamer basket is out of this world – the night i was there the special was crab, and the corn and potatoes with it, all generously spiced with old bay, sent me over the moon. and i love that even though we were there on a friday night, there were a ton of couples with kids there, right there along with the hipsters crowded at the bar. it’s such a fun place.

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