Reno, NV 89503
Every good college town has a few great student hangouts for before and after the big games. They are usually a bit grimy, smell like spilled booze and are full of obnoxious, loud, drunk people. But that’s OK because we were all probably like that at one point in life. Places like that put up with us back when we were boisterous college students. Therefore, we will always be grateful and show our loyalty as long as they exist. In many cases, we will even subject our innocent children’s fragile minds to the masses of inebriated college sports fanatics in order to pay homage to the bar across the street from the university and have a burger or pizza before the game.
In Reno, places like JJ’s Pies, The Little Wall and Archie’s Famous Grill are timeless. Their familiarity and reliability are what bring us back. Even the most sophisticated alumni will step foot into one of these beer-soaked bars to celebrate a huge victory and reminisce about the past.
The newly renovated Archie’s is divided into two parts, with plenty of outdoor patio-seating for the smokers and a separate entrance for each part.
The newly completed upstairs is a modern-style sports bar. It has sharp architecture, exposed duct work and nice wood, with dim, sophisticated, urban lighting. Sharp, large windows dominate, with hints of rolled metals added almost like tapestries to the 21st century pub. The sports bar is the late-night crowd’s place to eat, drink and be merry, sometimes even rowdy, with late-night food and drinks drying up around 1 a.m.
Downstairs is the 1950s mom-and-pop style diner and soda shop with red booths and white walls. Both operations have the same menu, and the food comes from the same kitchen. The downstairs restaurant is more suitable for a family dinner or a date, although downstairs isn’t necessarily any quiter.
My girlfriend, Chérie, and I went to Archie’s for some burgers last week. Archie’s is known for their killer burgers, but there are diner standards, too, like tuna, turkey, chicken, Cobb salad and chef salad. The service is prompt and great. It was kind of slow when we went there, but the one girl running the front of the house was doing a good job, and she was friendly.
I ordered the “World Famous Wolf Pack” burger for $9.49, and Chérie ordered Archie’s bacon cheeseburger for $8.49. My Wolf Pack burger was huge. There were two 1/3 pound, fresh and juicy beef patties with cheese, lettuce, tomato and onion. It wasn’t just a huge pile of meat, though. I was a little worried that it was going to be unmanageable, but it was wrapped tightly in wax paper that held it together nicely.
Chérie ordered a side of jalapeños and she was very happy when they arrived because they weren’t the usual canned peppers—they were fresh and spicy. We both liked the fries, too. Sometimes restaurants have soggy or nasty, processed fries. Not Archie’s. Their fries are made from 100 percent potato strips cooked golden brown and crispy.