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Ye Olde Plank Inn, Imperial Beach

Ye Olde Plank sees its share of day-drinking Navy dudes, cougars, and beach bums.
Ye Olde Plank sees its share of day-drinking Navy dudes, cougars, and beach bums.
Place

Ye Olde Plank Inn

24 Palm Avenue, Imperial Beach

Located beyond I.B.’s historic surfboard silhouettes at the end of Palm Avenue, Ye Olde Plank Inn looks innocuous enough. Its cartoon mascot — a turtle in a captain’s hat — raises a beer mug next to a life-size Captain Morgan statue, which grins down from the tiki-thatched roof.

It’s 4 p.m. on a Thursday and six patrons sit around the inn, all of them very drunk. The bartender mixes a drink from his station adorned with the customary nautical detritus — coconuts, miniature diver helmets, some blowfish. A brass placard on the wall reads, “Now serving you from the most South-Westerly bar in the U.S.,” though the designation is also claimed by the two-decade young I.B. Forum down the street.

“I’m the Asshole of the Month,” says a bearded man who resembles a middle-aged Bukowski. “My picture’s there on the wall. Just look under the toilet seat.”

I lift the wooden seat and my own face gawks back in a mirror. Bukowski has a chuckle with his cocktail as a ragged man stumbles up to him and slurs, “See him?” — gesturing vaguely in my direction — “Put me and him in a room and place bets — and you know every man in this room would bet on me — and you know what? They’d win. Shit, I’ll take any man in here, no problem.”

Consoled by his masculinity, ye olde drunkard slouches into a stool as I examine the photos in the adjacent billiard room depicting the bar’s enclosed patio flooded by a saline deluge in ’83 and again in ’88. The large patio is vacant today but sees its share of day-drinking Navy dudes, sun-wizened cougars, and blundering beach bums on margarita Mondays ($2.50/$10 pitcher), $5 domestic pitchers Tuesdays, $2.50 rum and coke Wednesday/Thursdays, and weekends with $2.50 bloodies till noon.

The bar’s uninspired microwave cuisine is best avoided in favor of El Tapatio a few blocks down Palm. Either way, don’t show up at the Plank without cash. You may just end up Asshole of the Month.

­­

Capacity: 42 inside, about 50 on the patio

Prices: Pitchers, $9 domestic/$13.50 craft and import

Happy Hour: Specials most days ‘til 6 p.m.

Hours: 6 a.m. to 2 a.m. daily

Cash only

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Ye Olde Plank sees its share of day-drinking Navy dudes, cougars, and beach bums.
Ye Olde Plank sees its share of day-drinking Navy dudes, cougars, and beach bums.
Place

Ye Olde Plank Inn

24 Palm Avenue, Imperial Beach

Located beyond I.B.’s historic surfboard silhouettes at the end of Palm Avenue, Ye Olde Plank Inn looks innocuous enough. Its cartoon mascot — a turtle in a captain’s hat — raises a beer mug next to a life-size Captain Morgan statue, which grins down from the tiki-thatched roof.

It’s 4 p.m. on a Thursday and six patrons sit around the inn, all of them very drunk. The bartender mixes a drink from his station adorned with the customary nautical detritus — coconuts, miniature diver helmets, some blowfish. A brass placard on the wall reads, “Now serving you from the most South-Westerly bar in the U.S.,” though the designation is also claimed by the two-decade young I.B. Forum down the street.

“I’m the Asshole of the Month,” says a bearded man who resembles a middle-aged Bukowski. “My picture’s there on the wall. Just look under the toilet seat.”

I lift the wooden seat and my own face gawks back in a mirror. Bukowski has a chuckle with his cocktail as a ragged man stumbles up to him and slurs, “See him?” — gesturing vaguely in my direction — “Put me and him in a room and place bets — and you know every man in this room would bet on me — and you know what? They’d win. Shit, I’ll take any man in here, no problem.”

Consoled by his masculinity, ye olde drunkard slouches into a stool as I examine the photos in the adjacent billiard room depicting the bar’s enclosed patio flooded by a saline deluge in ’83 and again in ’88. The large patio is vacant today but sees its share of day-drinking Navy dudes, sun-wizened cougars, and blundering beach bums on margarita Mondays ($2.50/$10 pitcher), $5 domestic pitchers Tuesdays, $2.50 rum and coke Wednesday/Thursdays, and weekends with $2.50 bloodies till noon.

The bar’s uninspired microwave cuisine is best avoided in favor of El Tapatio a few blocks down Palm. Either way, don’t show up at the Plank without cash. You may just end up Asshole of the Month.

­­

Capacity: 42 inside, about 50 on the patio

Prices: Pitchers, $9 domestic/$13.50 craft and import

Happy Hour: Specials most days ‘til 6 p.m.

Hours: 6 a.m. to 2 a.m. daily

Cash only

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Comments
3

"day-drinking Navy dudes"??? I resemble that remark.

May 2, 2012

Spent the BEST Cinco-de-Mayo in here of all time. The bartenders are awesome, funny and tough. The one pictured above is HOT! Very fun time...

May 11, 2012

I love that place.

May 13, 2012

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4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
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