The Bancroft opened in the site of the defunct dive Fannie’s, and the Spring Valley spot is now a punk and hardcore haven.
  • The Bancroft opened in the site of the defunct dive Fannie’s, and the Spring Valley spot is now a punk and hardcore haven.
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The Bancroft

9143 Campo Road, Spring Valley

You’ve probably seen the run-down Fannie’s Cocktails at Bancroft and Campo Road. You likely took note of its Wild West exterior. You might have wondered what in the world goes on in there. And, if you’re anything like me, you decided, Well, maybe I’ll check it out next time. As fortune would have it, “next time” never came.

About three months ago, the bar donned a large sign reading “The Bancroft” next to Fannie’s old marquee, which now entreats — perhaps tongue-in-cheek — “I assure you we are open.” And then a strange thing happened. They started booking awesome punk and hardcore bands, and, almost overnight, the place went from a shady Spring Valley shootout saloon to a destination dive for Uptown live-music lovers.

The culprit? Guitarist Rob Logic, whose résumé includes time with Death Crisis, Homeless Sexuals, and the Mice, among others.

“I’m a band slut,” Logic explains as the bar begins to fill on a recent weeknight, “so I know a lot of bands.”

In order to accommodate the onslaught of local and touring musicians, Logic and his crew built a new sound booth, extended the stage, put in a new sound system, and raised the well cocktails from a modest $3.25 to $3.75 during live entertainment.

“Just to have a little extra to give the bands,” Logic reasons. “I know what it’s like to tour. You gotta take care of the bands.”

Logic hung out at Fannie’s for a few weeks before taking over, listening to what regulars wanted to see improved. In response, he tore out the haggard carpeting, lowered drink prices, and pulled down most of the generic neon beer signs, except for Zima.

“It was the first beer I bought back when I turned 21,” a hulking Logic laughs.

These days, Logic’s tastes lean more toward domestic tall boys (PBR, Schlitz, Colt 45 — $4), Tecate cans ($2), Busch ($1.50), and a selection of over 15 bottled beers from Dogfish Head, Stone, Bear Republic, and beyond. The taps pour five standard brews and a selection from Santee’s Butcher’s Brewing. Want something special? Try a San Diego Sunrise or a Sunday Bloody Mary Sunday, both five bucks.

So, here’s the dizzle. Mondays and Tuesdays are free pool (two tables); Wednesdays and Thursdays, karaoke; Fridays and Saturdays, live music; Sundays, DJ.

Forget what you know. You heard it here first. Spring Valley is the new North Park.

  • Attire: Beer-stained hoodie
  • Hours: 6 a.m. to 2 a.m. daily
  • Happy: 3 to 7 P.M. daily; $2.75 wells, $2 Tecate bottles, $3 Heinekens
  • Price: $3.25 wells, $1.50+ beers
  • Food: Chips and stuff
  • Capacity: 130
  • Cards: $10 minimum
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Chad Deal Aug. 21, 2013 @ 4:28 p.m.

I assure you Spring Valley is the new North Park.


Shawn Walchef Aug. 23, 2013 @ 11:14 a.m.

Thank you Chad for daring to discover the hidden gems in our eclectic neighborhood of Spring Valley! Valley Farms Market is another community landmark with a plethora of local craft beers and award winning pollo asado. They are celebrating 57 years doing business in Spring Valley and are worthy of an article. Cali Comfort BBQ is happy that The Bancroft has stepped up to prove to skeptics that our wild East County neighborhood is making positive moves....


Carolann Aug. 23, 2013 @ 11:27 a.m.

Could turn out to be the next "Spring Valley Inn" maybe????


Dave Rice Aug. 24, 2013 @ 12:30 p.m.

I assure you that sign is most likely a nod to the original Clerks movie. I can also assure you that Valley Farms is an awesome local grocer with a killer, well-tended beer section and a great butcher counter...


roblogic Aug. 26, 2013 @ 7:11 p.m.

Valley Farms is a great spot. Glad to have it so close!


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