Marilyn's on K Street - #2

Marilyn’s on K is a Sacramento staple. Yet their relevance to the Sacramento bar culture has little to do with their specialty cocktails and fully stocked bar, instead having more to do with their live music. This refuge from the downtown transients and garbage (literally downtown at night is strewn with litter) is made possible thanks to cover charge and its downstairs locale. As you make your way through Sacramento’s downtown, stepping over sleeping bags where bums slumber and kicking beer bottles, you arrive at Marilyn’s on K: a place a little too clean given it’s surroundings.

Heading down the stairs reveals a garden patio where smokers smoke and people can talk whilst bands play. My first drink was an unimpressive overly tonic-filled gin and tonic. Marilyn’s attracts a diverse crowd, in terms of age groups, scenes, etc. At first it seemed like most people were late 30s and 40s. As the night went on though the youth trickled in for the headlining band. Marilyn’s has plenty of space and seating, one pool table, a stage with decent lightning, and a dance floor. The place is well-lit yet dark, providing nooks of shadows here and there, and the bar is drenched in red light. Overall the venue is quite inviting.

Garden/Patio Entrance Below Street Level

My next drink was supposedly noteworthy. I asked the bartender to make me something special, something that they would like to make and found special to Marilyn’s. What I got was a grape crush, I regret asking. The grape crush was even on their cocktail menu. A menu that isn’t anything outstanding. Good thing they have the live music.

Now, the Marilyn’s logo has a martini in place of the “y”. However they didn’t offer martinis on their drinks menu and I was skeptical of ordering one after my last two drinks. As I looked around no one was drinking martinis. Perhaps the logo once meant something but through the decades has evolved into a misnomer.

Downtown / Street Level

The main event for the night was a Weezer cover band. The band made the cover charge and the lack of quality drinks more than worth the trip. The first two bands did nothing for the crowd and the people remained a good ten feet from the stage. Once In The Garage came on, the dance floor filled up with movement, and a mass karaoke event took place. My experience solidifies Marilyn’s importance to downtown as a music venue. I am certain that the first thing that comes to mind whenever anyone talks about Marilyn’s on K is live music. I don’t see myself going back anytime soon unless a band I’m interested in is playing.

Marilyn's On K Stret - "Gentrification through cover charge"

Note* The #1 spot is being reserved. Stay tuned.


Starting Line

Our Mission statement is up and our plan has been developed. Sacramento, like all cities in the US, is made up of zip codes. Some zip codes provide a range of bars and drinks that entice modest adventurous drunkards. There are two of us here at Every Bar in Sacramento / Sacramento Bar Snapshots and we start in Sacramento's famed: 95814. This area comprises: downtown, Old Sacramento, and Midtown. Sacramento's oldest and newest bars are here, ranging from the ultra lounge to the dingy dive. It's the only place to start; so check back often as we tackle these bars with the gusto of a scum-dog avoiding Jabba the Hutts' horrendous breath and slimy grip.


Good Intentions

Having read, Every Bar in San Francisco, I thought: "Genius!" (must get to my simian roots and mimic). I hope I do the whole thing half as good as my mentor.

I also have another pal, some guy in Seattle, as friendly competition. I expect that blogging about Sacramento bars should be good fun. I won't try and rate them in any stupid, regimented way, just provide a snapshot of them from one hour of attendance on any given day. Coming soon our mission and bar experiences.