No frat-house drinks, so don’t waltz in asking for Red Bull and vodka.
4671 Park Boulevard, San Diego
It’s happy hour all day, every day at Lancers Cocktail Lounge at the corner of Park and Adams in University Heights. The $2.50 well drinks are some of the cheapest around, and the bartenders aren’t afraid to pour a decent shot of booze in there. They do have a reputation for refusing to serve classless frat-house drinks, however, so don’t waltz in asking for Red Bull and Vodka.
“We have coffee,” they’ll tell you, and you’d do well to pour a shot of Irish whiskey in the java like a real tough guy.
Despite the fact that the place hasn’t had much of a facelift in the past 40 years, Lancers is far from a hole in the ground. The bar is well stocked with beer from Europe and some of America’s finest craft brewers. There’s a touch of hauteur underneath the faded vinyl and worn-out carpet that some people might mistake for a “we don’t want you” vibe, but it’s really just a deep-seated sense of pride.
Lancers is a neighborhood haunt. The neighbors are proud to be there and the staff is proud that people aren’t stabbing each other on the regular; stay cool and the place will treat you well.
Take the pool tables, for instance. Billiards is serious business at Lancers. On any given night, the immaculate twin tables (jumps and massé shots not allowed, per order of conspicuous signage) play home to committed pool sharks who brought their own cues and plan to run the table.
But, again, be cool and maybe those masters will show you a thing or two. It’s rare for someone to show up at Lancers intent on being a dick.
In keeping with the mellow, UH atmosphere, Lancers isn’t the scene to get rowdy, spill beer on the pool tables, or give the bartenders a hard time. It is the place to get a game of pool, a martini, and change back from your $5.
Hours: Daily 10 a.m.–2 a.m.
Happy Hour: Always
Location: 4671 Park Boulevard
Cards: Nope — ATM inside