Tuesday, May 21, 2013
By Emma Bouthillette firstname.lastname@example.org
I have a small collection of flasks that range in size from two shots' worth to almost a small bottle, but it's nothing like the collection on display at Flask Lounge.
Flask Lounge, located just a stone’s throw from Holiday Inn by the Bay on Spring Street in Portland, keeps a busy schedule of entertainment and events.
Gordon Chibroski/Staff Photographer
WHERE: 117 Spring St., Portland
HOURS: 5 p.m. to 1 a.m. daily
PARKING: On street or a parking lot across the street with meters that are free after 6 p.m.
SPECIALS: Half-off glasses of wine on Mondays, $2 pint night Tuesdays, half-price appetizers on Wednesdays and Fridays feature a DJ and dancing
SCENE: An upscale neighborhood lounge near the West End with a friendly atmosphere and relaxed style
AMENITIES: Large flat-screen television with two behind the bar, a dance floor with disco ball and karaoke on the first and third Thursday of every month, plus a variety of events to keep you entertained
I met a friend out for a weekend-welcoming drink at Flask on a recent Friday. For both of us, it was our first time hitting up the lounge near Portland's West End. Shortly after we walked in, I spotted the lineup of flasks on a ledge near the ceiling. Each one had a little funky flair to it, just like the bar.
We had our pick of seats either inside or outside when we arrived around 6 p.m. Despite decent weather, we opted to stay inside.
My friend ordered a #9 draft on special for $3, and I picked the vodka lemonade special for $5. Had I known the cocktail would be made with pink lemonade rather than regular lemonade, I may have been more inclined to order the Whipped+Root Beer cocktail for $6.
There was only one other customer while we were there, and even though it was early evening, music was playing loudly in the small lounge. We found the loud music funny since most places keep it toned down until nightfall. The bartender even admitted the bar doesn't really start filling up until 9 p.m. or so.
It's understandable why Flask would get busier later on. The lounge has a full schedule of events listed on its website and an active Facebook page with regular updates. Most events don't start until 9 p.m., and the majority of events are free. Upcoming entertainment includes DJ and dancing Friday night, an early all-ages show for $10 starting at 4 p.m. on Saturday featuring Breathing Blue, Kids Gotta Do, Beware of Pedestrians, Altertone and more followed by "Pleasure -- a Deep & Tribal House Dance Party" starting at 9 p.m.
Flask had only a few beers on tap, and I'm guessing from the cases of Pabst Blue Ribbon behind the bar, PBR may in fact be a drink of choice there.
Despite my own personal aversion to pink lemonade, the drink the bartender mixed for me was quite refreshing on a warm summer evening. While we sipped our drinks and chatted, she spent a lot of time in the small open kitchen prepping for dinner. We also figured out she was mixing up a couple batches of Jell-O shots featuring some great flavor combinations.
I also recently learned that while Maine may be the home of Moxie, Flask is the home of the Moxie Bomb. Had I done adequate research before visiting the lounge, I would have known this and maybe given it a shot. The bartenders put a twist on the ever-popular Jager Bomb and drop a shot of Jagermeister into Moxie instead of Red Bull. Given the unique taste of Moxie and the acquired taste for Jagermeister, this must make for a very interesting combination. And after a few, I'm sure, a very interesting night.
Emma Bouthillette is a freelance writer who lives in Biddeford.