Five bars to check out during spring break

Mike Vasquez, Staff Reporter

It’s time to start ditching the chocolate stouts for the long island ice teas, and ciders for crisp pilsners, with spring coming in hot and pushing every grain of winter out of the city. For those staying in El Paso, have no fear. We have compiled a list of bars and lounges that will be perfect for the warmer weather. Our list includes places throughout El Paso with an attention to the outdoors, preferably patios or lofts.

Hope and Anchor 

Located at 4012 N. Mesa right in Mesa Village, the seaside–themed bar opens up to a cozy patio complete with a koi pond and an extra bar. The draw to this place is the atmosphere, the relaxed ease of knocking back a drink with your friends in the evening and dragging chairs over to tables with strangers who are more than happy to make room for you. A huge perk about Hope and Anchor is that the adjacent restaurant, Sabertooth, will bring your food over if you tell them you’ll be next door. Make sure to order their Moscow Mule at least once. Watch out for their Sunday Bloody Sunday special, which is a custom Bloody Mary with a free grilled cheese.

5 Points Bistro 

Not to be confused with 501 Bistro, the equal parts bar, patio and garage on 3019 Montana has the beach-beer-shack-look down to a point.  It is a central point between east and west El Paso, which is good for those of you with friends throughout the entire city. Even if 5 Points does not suit your taste, the 5 Points area has its fair share of hole-in-the-wall bars.  The selection of drinks are pretty thorough, although nothing special, but the quirkiest thing about 5 Points is that it bakes its bread in house.

Ode

Located at 3233 N. Mesa, by campus on the way to the UTEP Student Recreation Center.  Ode is El Paso’s revival of in-house brewing since Jackson’s on the west side closed its doors. As attractive as an in-house brewery can be, patrons come for the food just as much as the beer. Maria Burciaga, junior mechanical engineering major and Ode beer connoisseur, said, “Their Milanese chicken sandwich can have its own religion.” Without spoiling your own experience with this sandwich, I’ll just say Burciaga may be on to something.

Blackbird Cantina Deluxe 

The once-laundromat-now-cantina has turned the almost deserted Franklin Street into a necessary stopping point before, after or despite Chihuahua’s games. The dusty, rural feel of the place is amplified with the shipping container architecture, but there is something regal about the wooden tables and copper countertops. They specialize in craft beers and cocktails, and the bartenders are more than happy to walk you through the menu and deciding what you want. The staff constantly experiments with new drinks, so get a word in with one of them for a surprise. Drinks to look out for: Southside, complete with an egg white, and the $3.50 Guinness.