2007_01_food_buckslodge.jpgThe déjà vu you may get upon entering Buck's Lodge on Atlantic Avenue is not from the country paraphernalia you’ll recognize from similar southern-tinged bars around the area. Even though there seems to be an overload of deer heads on bar walls, it's not that specifically which will make you do a double take. Just think for a moment, order a drink, plop on the evergreen couch, grab a bowl of peanuts and try to explain to the girlfriend why you once visited the red-painted, Japanese-themed gay bar called the Dragon Lounge, the former occupant of the space. Who knew that authentic country flair could be achieved with such incidentals as a big screen TV, Buck Hunter, free peanuts, two dart boards, and some ugly, yet admittedly comfortable, furniture? Especially admire how the once sleek, disco-tinged dance room is now the dart room. There are official lines on the floor. Really, what a job.

2007_01_food_bucks2.jpgBuck’s Lodge doesn’t have live music like Hank’s Saloon (Atlantic and 3rd Avenues), or the carefree atmosphere of Gothamist favorite Moonshine (317 Columbia Street) but it does have the Buck Shot, a $2 shot of whiskey mixed with nutmeg and cinnamon, which might be one of the cheapest ways to down hard liquor in Brooklyn that won't make you gag. That’s not even the happy hour price. In fact, it's hard to imagine many juke joints in the South offering such a deal through the whole night. That the spices basically just hide some pedestrian whiskey is an afterthought once the bartender clangs a bell and yells for you to take the shot. It'll be over before you know it. They also have Buck's Piss, a draft beer that is unfortunately very adequately named.

All this kitsch is obviously trying to pull in a different crowd and in that respect they’ve certainly done the job. Whether that’s a good thing or not remains to be seen. There aren’t many hill-jacks in Cobble Hill and Brooklyn Heights, but with such cheap drinks we expected to see a little more spill over from Floyd’s or Last Exit which are both very close. It’s almost comical to see 30-somethings with suits watching football interacting with the snooty 50-somethings who bitch about drink prices and complain about the TV being too loud. But soon the old ladies will leave and the bartender will turn up the game and all the guys will be happy. Which, incidentally, will bring back the déjà vu.

Buck’s Lodge
145 Atlantic Ave.
between Clinton and Henry
(718) 624-7658