From The Slaughtered Lamb to the Queen Vic.
Look, we like a drink, okay, and we also love pop culture. Together, they sound like the best combination since Alan Partridge chased a pint of lager with a gin and tonic and Bailey’s Irish Cream. Here, then, are the fictional bars that NME longs to get pissed in. Ours is a pint, yeah?
“You made me miss… and I never miss.” The words that greeted David and Jack, the main character in this bloody comedy horror, as they entered a rural Yorkshire pub, their outsider status shocking one regular so badly that he missed the dartboard.
Order: On second thoughts – nothing. Get out as fast as you can (but beware the Moors, stick to the path)!
The two sozzled heroes of this comedy tire of their rancid flat and take refuge at London boozer the Mother Black Cap, where the owner turfs them out for being a couple of “perfumed ponces”. The pub’s now been demolished now, which is what would have happened to Withnail if he’d got into a fight with that owner.
Order: The finest wines known to humanity, as the lads later request in a rural tearoom.
“Funny how?” If there’s a single standout scene you remember from Martin Scorsese’s 1990 classic Goodfellas, it’s the one where Tommy (Joe Pesci) turns on Henry (Ray Liotta) for saying he’s “funny”. Tommy snarls, “Like I’m a clown, I amuse you?”, before revealing it was a joke all along. The scene is more guaranteed to make you queasy than a bad hangover.
Order: An apple Martini.
‘90s kids will remember this sitcom about Gary (Nicholas Lyndhurst), a TV repairman who leads a double life. On the one the hand, he lives in the present day wife Yvonne (played by Michelle Holmes and later Emma Amos). But he also has access to a time portal back to the ‘40s, where he kicks it at The Royal Oak pub with his girlfriend Phoebe. Looking back, that’s a really weird premise for a sitcom, isn’t it.
Order: An extremely cheap ‘40s-priced pint. Wait, that’s why Gary went through this all along, isn’t it?
Chances are you can hold your drink better than Seth Cohen (Adam Brody), hero of this beloved California-set teen drama. This venue was host to performances from indie faves The Killers, Deathcab For Cutie (Seth’s favourite), Modest Mouse and The Walkmen. In other words: it was bangers by the beach on the regular down The Bait Shop.
Order: If you’re anything like Seth trying to impress bartender Alex (Olivia Wilde), it’ll be JD straight from a hip flask. And you’ll neck it by the speakers, “because I don’t care about tinnitus.”
Moe Szyslak’s joint: a place where even Barney Gumble is a hero, where Karl and Lenny can always be found waiting for beer time, where Homer Simpson forever avoids his responsibilities. Just don’t make the mistake of going to Joe’s in Shelbyville.
Order: Well, duh. We can’t get enough of that wonderful Duff!
Aha! Alan Partridge spent 183 days of his life living at the Linton Travel Tavern – a Travelodge, basically – in 1996’s I’m Alan Partridge, during which time he kept “the wolf from the door” by weighing up the pros and cons of the “pedestrianisation of Norwich city centre” and royally fucked off some farmers. All against the backdrop of an austere and bleak roadside hotel where the only way to get one up on the staff is to bring your own big plate to scoop up the complementary breakfast.
Order: A lager with gin and tonic and Bailey’s Irish cream chasers. In other words, Alan’s invention, the Lady Boy.
The gang – Mac, Dee, Charlie, Dennis and of course Frank – are not the greatest bar proprietors in the world, so we probably do all need to pay a visit en masse to their south Philly joint before it goes broke. In one episode, a journalist at the Philadelphia Enquirer even dubs it the worst in the whole city. Still, which other boozers do you know that’s been an unregulated bar and which even has it’s own theme, which goes: “They say the world’s your oyster, but oyster ain’t for me… I like life at Paddy’s Pub.” Altogether now!
Order: Well, the beer is cheap, but when it was an unregulated bar you could also score hard drugs, so take your pick.
There was some controversy recently when Lee Ryan from Blue – you know, the one who made a tit of himself on Celebrity Big Brother – took over the reins of this iconic soap boozer as leather-clad badlad Woody Woodward. But in a lifetime that’s seen the Queen Vic get robbed by masked men and play host to Phil Mitchell’s descent into crack addiction, drama in nothing new.
Order: Anything you bloody well want, so long as you raise a glass to Peggy Mitchell.
“You’ve always been the caretaker.” We’ve all overdone it on the old amber nectar and lost track of time, but you – like Jack Torrence in Stephen King’s masterful horror novel, adapted brilliantly to the screen by Stanley Kubrick – ever forget that you’re a murderous psychopath frozen in time as the bad magic of The Overlook Hotel courses through your alcohol-infused veins?
Order: A bottle of bourbon, a little glass and some ice. Oh, and an axe for dementedly hunting your family through the corridors of a haunted hotel.
Like, this pool hall and arcade game-stuffed bar was already one of the hippest in the movies before Matthew McConaughey’s character Wooderson waltzed in to the soundtrack of Bob Dylan’s ‘Hurricane’. After that, you can’t touch it for cinematic cool.
Order: A Bud bought with a fake ID.
Sometimes you wanna go where everybody knows your name. And if that means pitching up to this Boston bar, where Sam (Ted Dasnson) is always on hand to elecit a raucous response from a laughter track, then you could do far worse than mining YouTube for clips of this classic sitcom.
Order: Cosy nostalgia with a chaser of LOLs.