If the gastro-pub scene is a little grungy for your taste, consider the chic environs of the just-opened-today Varga Bar.
While the 22 hard-to-find craft beers on tap -- including Russian River Damnation and Flying Fish cask ale -- would make any beer snob stand up a little straighter, the brand new lounge at the corner of 10th and Spruce Streets features a sexy pin-up themed decor that gets your blood pumping before the first brew hits your lips.
Varga is the third venture from George Anni and R. Evan Turney, owner and chef-owner, respectively, of Gayborhood hot spots Valanni and Mercato. The lounge takes its name from the comely pin-up girls created by artist Alberto Vargas who were featured in Esquire magazine throughout the 1940s. Take a seat at the leather-tufted bar and look up - you'll see a few examples of these buxom babes painted on the ceiling.
If you'd rather look at the passerby, there are floor-to-ceiling windows that open to the street, plus outdoor seating. Turney has created a menu of comfort foods that tops out at $22 and includes a beer-braised pork sandwich, macaroni and cheese and an ice cream float that incorporates artisan root beer made by local brewer Victory.