Notable Bar & Venue Closures Of 2010

agora dec29.jpg
Craig Hlavaty
Agora: Not reopening for a while.
Houston had quite a few bars close down in 2010. They were your favorite places to drink, mingle, talk to a conquest, bum a cigarette, and spend money you didn't have, and they all mostly left with whimper, or in one bar's case, about a dozen fire trucks.
For every dynamite bar opening this year - Barcadia, Grand Prize Bar, Fitzgerald's, Hefley's, Liberty Station, Moon Tower Inn, Royal Oak, any number of gastropubs - there was something of an equal and opposite bloodletting.

Most bars just coalesce into something else over time. It would have been hard for us to imagine a year ago that right now we would be craving rabbit and pheasant hot dogs, one of our favorite bars would play Motorhead, LCD Soundsystem, and Ke(dollar sign)ha in equal measures, and we would be playing skee-ball drunk in Midtown on a Tuesday.

In 2011 we can expect more openings, including the new location of Dirt Bar somewhere downtown (shhhhh!), the new Walter's (possibly off Tuam, but shhhh!), and rising of a wine and coffee bar near Natachee's on Main by the Island.

This time next year, we could be raving about a new haunt that serves gallon jugs of whiskey and plays Klaus Nomi and Ratt all day. A boy can dream.

Agora: On Halloween Eve, Rocks Off sat outside Agora in Christina Hendricks drag taking pictures, along with a million other costumed drunks, of a roiling fire nearly consuming the popular wine and study spot on Westheimer. A fire had broke out next door at an antique store, which quickly affected Agora.

The owners are quickly renovating, and at one point were shooting for a grand reopening on New Year's Eve, but we are still not sure if that is still happening. Either way, it should be up and running for 2011.

chances dec29.jpg
Craig Hlavaty
Chances: The Montrose nightlife staple and popular hub for the LGBT community closed down in late November to make way for a restaurant. It didn't make anyone happy, who saw it as another piece of LGBT history falling by the wayside in the neighborhood. It's just been a year and change since the iconic Mary's , which still sits dormant across the way from Chances, shuttered unceremoniously.

The Social: The Social was one of the first Washington Avenue bars to open the floodgates for the avenue's current drinking scene. After it closed in July, new tenants came in to the property and opened a new bar called Swaye, which serves fried bacon on its menu.

Sugarcane: Housed in the former location of uber-popular wine bar The Corkscrew, Sugarcane seemed like a great idea at the time, making organic cocktails in a time when everyone wanted natural, even when they were getting tanked. In the end it was too much like the successful Anvil in Montrose, and it never found its footing on Washington Avenue.

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