Best Live Venue - 2006
In the last couple of years this well-renovated Mission District destination has become the best spot in the city to see a band. It's certainly big enough 6,000 square feet to handle national touring acts, but still feels cozy enough for a sparsely attended local show. The upgrade in the sound system, the higher stage, and the expansive mezzanine (which offers a great view, even when the place is packed) make the room much more crowd-friendly than other clubs of its size. The heavy pours of Fernet, the affordable drinks, the frequent sightings of Market Street sign-holder Frank Chu (who lent the bar its name in exchange for a bottomless well of Budweiser), and the friendly folks who work the place simply ice the cake. And when you come back out onto the street at the end of the night, your ears ringing from a great show and your blood adequately thinned, all the classic burrito spots are just a stumble away.