Just like 40 is the new 30 and Orange is the new Black, Thursday evenings are apparently now the new Fridays. After what was feeling like a full week of work already, we were on the search for an unchartered, local watering hole. EVENTUALLY (there’s a story), we landed at the 25th Lane Grill & Lounge.
Well, “landed” might be the understatement of the year! It was more like crashed and burned. Let’s first establish the scene: Thursday night, 7:00 p.m., it was the first summer rain and we’d just missed Happy Hour.
Trisha: “On my way from South McAllen. What’s the name of the bar again?” I texted to Gaby.
Gaby: “The Dude Abides, exclamation point, send” I commanded to my phone. For the life of me, I swore that was the name of the tiny little bar inside Flamingo Bowl.
Trisha: “You mean The Last Pocket? The one on the other side?”
Gaby: “NO. The Dude Abides. On the other side.”
Trisha: Parked right in front of the entrance, “Are you sure it’s not the 25th Lane Grill & Lounge?” I had already parked 3 times, in the rain, in various areas of the SAME parking lot, trying to find this illusion of a place that my comrade had been texting me about. I waited on her response. Nada
Gaby: After driving in the pouring rain, I finally arrived at Flamingo Bowl, found a parking space right away in front of our destination. “Oh, it’s called the 25th Lane Grill & Lounge,” I texted to Trisha, “I found a parking spot right in front of it! (smiley face emoji)”
Trisha: “LOL, that’s the name I had given you AND, yeah, that was my last parking spot!”
Gaby: Woops! In my defense, dear readers, by Thursday evening I was all over the place. It was National IPA Day and hadn’t been able to have a nice, chill beer all day. (Ok, more like 44 degrees so not really cold beer by American standards.)
We walked in and hanging above the bar there was an illuminated sign that read in all caps, “THE DUDE ABIDES”.
Gaby: “See, I wasn’t all wrong,” as I ran to a table and started to look at the menu. 7:15 p.m.-we just missed Happy Hour.
Trisha: Not to worry, another Happy Hour began at 8:00 p.m. which offered $2.00 off all domestic draft beer.
Gaby: I need a drinky drink, stat!
Trisha: I need a quick visit to the potty room.
Gaby: Umm, go. I’ll order the drinks.
Normally, 25th Lane Grill & Lounge is a little hangout where bowling regulars can go quietly to drink a beer while they wait for the rest of their group to arrive. But besides being National IPA Day last week, Thursday was also the long-awaited return of football season and the Valley’s BAE, “Los Cowboys”, had their first preseason game. The game was on the bar’s large projector screen and the volume was so loud that we had to yell our conversation across the table. It was a pure delight! (please note the sarcasm)
INSIDER’S NOTE: Flamingo Bowl also offers College Night every Thursday from 8:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m.
Gaby: “Two vodka-sodas and whatever IPA you have on draft please. Oooh, and a large basket of tater tots!” Now, if you know me at all, I have always said that get me a bar with some good drinks and tater tots, and I’ll be the happiest girl in the world. I was half-happy. I’ll let you and the Taaka decide which half was not.
Trisha: Although small in size, the bar does offer full-menu options like sandwiches, burgers and salads. For appetizers, there’s the 25th Lane Sampler (cheese quesadillas, chicken strips, breaded mozzarella and fried pickle chips with sides of marinara, ranch dipping sauce and pico de gallo), the Nachos Supreme, or perhaps the pork egg rolls, street tacos or steamed edamame. There’s even a kids menu for the tiny “tots”. After we gorged on those taters, we ordered up a “side” of the buffalo wings with Ranch and Bleu Cheese for dipping.
Gaby: They were like mini-fried chickens pieces of heaven!
Trisha: Someone was hungry (wink). I’m still curious about those Buffalo Bacon Ranch Tots topped with buffalo sauce, ranch dressing and applewood bacon. We might have to go back sooner than later.
25th Lane Grill & Lounge is located inside Flamingo Bowl at 3301 N. 23rd Street, McAllen, TX, 78501. Their hours of operation are: Monday-Thursday 4:00 p.m.-11:00 p.m.; Friday 4:00 p.m.-2:00 a.m.; Saturday 12:00 p.m.-2:00 a.m.; and Sunday 12:00 p.m.-11:00 p.m. Happy Hour is Monday-Friday from 4:00 p.m.-7:00 p.m.
Flamingo Bowl offers “Dollarmania”every Wednesday were guests can enjoy $1 Bowling, $1 Shoe Rental, $1 Hot Dogs and $1 Soft Drinks (we hear Jell-O shots might also be a $1, too). You can contact 25th Lane Grill & Lounge at (956) 686-1286 or via their Facebook account @25thlane. For more information visit them at http://www.flamingobowlonline.com/.
Oh, one last note. In celebrating National Bowling Day on August 12, Flamingo Bowl will be providing guests with 1 free game of bowling! All you have to do is sign up at www.gobowling.com/nbd.
Gaby Jones and Trisha Watts work hand-in-hand with the service industry. Jones is in charge of craft and imported beer for L&F Distributors and Watts is the communications director for Visit McAllen. Each week they will have a new adventure and provide an opinion on various locations throughout the Rio Grande Valley.