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Tabu Lounge & Sports Bar

07/16/2010

With summer in full effect, there are many happy hour options for the nine-to-five office drones to wet their whistles and munch on some scrumptious snacks.  Tabu Lounge is located in the Market East area, between Locust and Walnut on 12th Street (next to 12th Street Gym).  Tabu holds a happy hour from 5-7 pm and has reduced drink specials from 7-9 pm.  They also have “Three Dollar Sundays” and games nights, making it one of the most affordable bars in the “Gayborhood.”

Formerly Sal’s, Tabu has been fully remodeled and is under new ownership.  The space has been completely redone, including a huge third floor space with windows overlooking 12th street.  Downstairs houses a pool table and the ground floor has tables and seating for the bar crowd.  Sports games play on the many flat-screen TVs, and a jukebox plays a wide variety of tunes.

Berry Acai Absolut and Lemonade

Berry Acai Absolut and Lemonade

The bar is sponsored by Absolut, as evidenced by their selection of Absolut Vodka flavors.  Part of their 7-9 pm drink specials include $4 Absolut drinks and $3 well drinks.  The selection of Absolut flavors are: Raspberri, Peppar, Vanilia, Apeach, Berry Acai, Pears, Mandarin, Citron, Mango, Original, and 100-proof.  One of their summer drink specials is Lemonade & Berry Acai vodka with fresh blueberries to garnish.  The Happy hour specials include $2 to $3 drafts and rotating bar drinks.  “Three Dollar Sundays” include $3 wines, $3 U-Call-Its, and $3 Sweet Tea Vodkas.

Lump Blue-Claw Crabcake Sandwich with Potato Salad

Lump Blue-Claw Crabcake Sandwich with Potato Salad

The food is also affordable yet delicious.  Typical bar food gets a face lift with creative combinations of flavors and a wide variety for the discerning palette.  A lump crabcake sandwich is served with hunks of blue-claw crab and spicy mayo and a side of potato salad, and can also be ordered as sliders for an appetizer.  The same goes for the lovely Kobe beef burgers served on potato rolls with aged cheddar.  The presentation was so adorable it was almost a shame to eat it.  Tabu Nachos are piled high and must be shared, topped with roasted corn, beans, jalapeno, sour cream, salsa verde, and fresh guacamole.  They can also be ordered topped with grilled chicken or Kobe ground beef.  Tabu serves several different kinds of chicken wings including Jim Bean Bourbon Glazed, Hot, Mild, and Boneless.

Kobe Beef Sliders

For a more exotic experience, try the Crispy Calamari with a plum vinaigrette dipping sauce.  Southwest Chicken Rolls with a ranch dipping sauce and a Thai chicken salad with asian noodles and cucumbers also show an eastern influence in this varied menu.

For the vegetarians in your crowd, there is a Crostini Trio with garlic white beans, hummus, and tomato-basil served with toasted baguettes.  There are also buffalo-style cheesesticks and Cajun battered cauliflower served with parmesan cream dip.  The Tabu Salad with cashews, julienned apples, and a pomegranate vinaigrette is also sure to please. For a larger plate, I recommend ordering the nachos vegetarian-style or diving into a portabello mushroom sandwich served with sliced avocado and roasted red peppers.

For more information on events and menu updates, check out: www.tabuphilly.com

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