Sunday 6 p.m.
Lumpy’s Bar Highland
Find Your Happy Place
Each Lumpy’s location shares the fun feature of being labyrinthine in their layouts, giving one the opportunity to find hidden places to hang out. We settle down amid the baseball-watching crowd upstairs, where there is a lounge-y feel. But other folks are tucked away in their own little areas, including the strobing dance floor in the basement, another fully functioning bar area, a pool hall and the high-ceilinged patio.
3000 S. Highland Drive, Salt Lake City, 801-484-5597, LumpysBar.com
Sunday 6:45 p.m.
A Bar Named Sue
Downstairs, Downing Beers
As you’d hope and expect, The Man in Black is sneering down at us. At a classic spot that’s impossibly large for a strip-mall basement, Sue’s regulars are gabbing with the bartenders and one another, as they do just about every night. There are the requisite TVs, pool tables and stage, but the preferred mode of enjoyment here always seems to be just kicking back and enjoying whatever’s on tap.
3928 S. Highland Drive, Salt Lake City, 801-274-5578, A-Bar-Named-Sue.com
Sunday 8 p.m.
Get a Table, Game On
There’s no need for subtlety out here in sprawling Fort Union. The Huddle is a big room with big TVs that delivers on a national-chain-type large-sports-bar scale without the stereotypical machismo that normally accompanies it. Tonight, it’s a bit more laid-back than what you’d get for a Monday Night Football crowd, but there are still plenty of smiles, and even a guy playing Golden Tee before 1 a.m. First time for everything.
2400 E. Fort Union Blvd., Cottonwood Heights, 801-438-8300, TheHuddleSportsBar.com
Sunday 9:05 p.m.
The Point After
Sports Bar Sunday, Sunday, Sunday!
The Orioles are spanking the Yankees on half of The Point After’s 30-odd TVs, but it doesn’t stop a handful of regulars from “conversating” (their words) loudly over a damned-important disagreement. A tasty plate of teriyaki steak fingers and a couple of cold Coors Lights later, there’s still no resolution to the conflict at the other end of the bar, but at least Baltimore has put New York out of its misery on the diamond.
5445 S. 900 East, Murray, 801-266-9552, PointAfterSLC.com
Sunday 9:45 p.m.
The Hog Wallow Pub
Escape to Another Realm
We stepped away from the freeway and into somewhere more befitting Frodo and Samwise. The dense foliage absorbing the sounds of the babbling creek is quite the way to enjoy a sunset. And as the temperatures drop, it’s nice to know that the log cabin is only a step away. For a storybook-like place that’s so tucked into its residential surroundings that you almost can’t help driving past it the first time, Hog has an impressively full-functioning operation. At nearly 10 p.m. on a Sunday, we still have our pick of the full menu. The hot wings are excellent, the flavor equivalent of a kick from the patio’s boar statue, were it alive.
3200 E. Big Cottonwood Canyon Road, Salt Lake City, 801-733-5567, TheHogWallow.com
Sunday 10:06 p.m.
Frankie & Johnnie’s
Two Guys (Literally) Walk Into a Bar
Besides the bartender and his extra-friendly dog, there are exactly two patrons in Frankie & Johnnie’s tonight, and one of them is “on the job” in the name of journalism—or whatever a bar guide qualifies as. F&J’s has been open for decades, and there are few clear indicators of what kind of dive I’ve stepped into; it’s a classically static dive, from the popcorn ceiling to the Vegas-lounge carpet, as yet untainted by downtown irony-seekers hoisting tallboys to their mustaches. Keep Murray weird.
3 W. 4800 South, Murray, 801-263-0072
Sunday 10:45 p.m.
Pachanga Night Go-Go Dancers
There’s a kid in the corner whipping up a graffiti mural on a giant canvas. I have no idea what he’s trying to paint, but it sort of resembles the bikini-clad go-go dancers who are currently atop giant white columns, dropping their asses to some Pitbull track I’ve never heard. For this particular Sugar House club, Sundays are the marquee event. It’s called Pachanga Night, and it’s packed. A glance at the dance floor reveals a mixture of college kids, cross-dressers and heavily garnished blue-tinted drinks. The guy who runs this party goes by C.J. He’s frantically running around, making sure the dancers are ready to go and the DJs are playing the right kind of music. The more of these blue things I drink, the more I respect his hustle. I also respect that he does all this while wearing a metallic silver thong.
1051 E. 2100 South, Salt Lake City, 801-696-0639
Sunday 12:10 a.m.
Discover “The Rest” for Yourself
I called ahead and made a reservation for what’s been rumored to be a secret bar and restaurant called The Rest, hidden in the basement of Bodega, which, on the outside, appears to be a small convenience store with an attached standing-room-only bar. There’s no way to know about what lies beneath unless you’re told about it, or just happen to notice that the hallway leading to the restrooms has a fluorescent green sign above it that reads “The Restrooms” with “rooms” slightly burnt out. I walk up to the counter and give the mustachioed guy behind the counter my name. He hands me a key and points to a locked door past the restrooms … you can find out the rest for yourself.
331 S. Main, Salt Lake City, 801-532-4042, Bodega331.com
Monday 12:19 a.m.
Dick N’ Dixie’s
That Couple Glued to the Jukebox
It’s 40 minutes to last call on Sunday night—technically Monday morning—and the college-age almost-couple who showed up at 9 p.m. are still going strong. They worked their way through several inventive and inexpensive Dick N’ Dixie’s cocktails, like the Bear Fucker—Bud Light, orange juice and a shot of Captain Morgan. Now they’re both drinking from the same beer as they split their time between the pool table and the electronic jukebox at the back of this laid-back neighborhood bar, requesting hip-hop jam after hip-hop jam as they giggle over some private joke. If they have class or work tomorrow, they don’t care—tonight might mark the start of something big.
479 E. 300 South, Salt Lake City, 801-521-3556