Feel like inviting some friends over, but don’t feel like cleaning house or supplying all the beer? Make a quick call and head over to the F/Stop Fitzgeralds Public House. Known as Salem’s smallest bar, the converted house seats about 24. If you are going to check out F/Stop, leave your ego at home. It’s as unpretentious as a bar can get. You also won’t find any lottery machines or mood lighting.
The kitchen consists of microwavable snacks, so don’t arrive hungry and expect a dinner. The Karna Vor Gourmet BBQ truck shows up from time to time on Friday nights, and that makes for a win–win for both patrons and business owners.
The outside fire pit is popular and creates a fun party atmosphere, but only wear clothes you don’t mind catching that “fire pit” smell. Known for the movie buff memorabilia and good classic pick-up games of Scrabble and trivia, this bar is Salem’s living room. “I love working here,” said Chuck Magee, the Wednesday bartender. “Everyone wants to be there. I pour for people who are thankful, respectful and having a good time.”
Magee is not only a bartender, but a regular on those nights he feels like going out. “The best night was when, well, I was feeling pretty tipsy and I kept walking around with a bean burrito in my pocket. I would jokingly say to anyone who would say ‘Is that a burrito in your pocket,’ ‘Thanks for noticing!’ That is just the kind of place it is.”
F/Stop is not the place for a rousing bachelor party, nor the place to hear great tunes, but with its small atmosphere you will leave with a few new friends and a great appreciation for unique beers. “The star of the show is our beer selection. We don’t have Miller, Coors or Bud. We try and get some good local beer, but we have the more obscure stuff that is really good. We rotate the taps, but the Gilgamesh Mamba is a standby.” Happy hour is until 6 p.m and Monday is food servers’ and OLCC discount night, so go and check it out!