I gotta admit that I was a little sad to see the sign go down on the Metro Bar, formerly Metro Bistro. Before 2nd Avenue was a destination spot, Metro was there providing all of us locals a place to get a drink and meet up. From spaghetti nights to music to karaoke to trivia, I've got a lot of great memories at the Metro.
For better or worse, the clientele in the area has changed a lot over the past 8 years since I've been downtown, and the Metro had seen a decline in business. The foot traffic has gone from locals of all ages dressed almost pajama casually walking around their neighborhood, to nattily dressed twenty somethings looking to hook up at a place with a more upscale feel than the Calculated Dive that was the Metro. I was really excited to hear that Andrew Collins from Lyric Hot Dogs had bought it, and that he and Feizal Valli were going to give it a makeover complete with a new name: The Collins.
The Accordion Player and I had been sticking our noses into The Collins all during the buildout, but Thursday night we went there for the first time to drink and watch a little football. The Collins has a sleek modern decor, and lo and behold it was full of those same dressed up twenty-somethings that had walked in and immediately out of Metro just a few weeks before. I hated to see the Metro go, but there is just enough of the bones remaining to feel a little bit of nostalgia.
The cocktails were awesome. I highly recommend The Collins' version of The Last Word. The Accordion Player had a Hairy Carrie, which is a classic cocktail with a rich history dating from the turn of the century, and if you ask Feizal to make you one I will personally buy you a drink the next time I see you.
The website (http://collinsbirmingham.com/) is a little sparse right now, but we were told that is progressing. The site's got the hours, though, which is all I really care about anyway.