Lucky Bastard Saloon Now Open in the Gaslamp Quarter

July 16, 2013

Located in San Diego’s historic Gaslamp Quarter, Lucky Bastard Saloon has taken over the space formerly occupied by Cremolose, and pays tribute to the area’s storied Stingaree district, which historically offered a wealth of colorful entertainment and diversions. Saloons were the destination of choice to enjoy a stiff drink, flirt with dance hall girls or engage in a game of chance for gambling gunmen and tourists alike. If good fortune was on their side, they earned the distinction of “lucky bastard.”

At Lucky Bastard Saloon, Harley's have replaced the horses, yet the whiskey and wine still pour freely.  Craft beer and spirits loving drinkers, sports enthusiasts and weekend warriors fill the saddles where the gun slinging gamblers would have once gathered. And, the rowdy rounds of high stakes cards have evolved into fun-loving games played with friends or watched on the big screen.

The Dahm Triplets
Owner Nicole Dahm Kelly (of the famed Dahm triplets) is a small town Minnesota girl, turned Playboy Playmate, model and actress and now restaurateur.  At Lucky Bastard she’s going back to her roots in tribute to her love of sports, spirits and good company.

Nicole wanted Lucky Bastard Saloon to be something personal, different and a small piece of who she is. You’ll see her vintage 1942 Harley Davidson in the window and an ode to her hometown in Minnesota represented in the wildlife on the walls. The saddles-turned-barstools are a nod to her love of riding horses. TVs for watching sports were a must as were the games, especially beer pong. She and her husband, Michael Kelly, are a formidable team on the beer pong circuit. She also has a love for baking fueled by her sweet tooth, so the chocolate chip cookies and many of the other sweet treats on the menu at Lucky Bastard Saloon are her own recipes.

Nicole took the Lucky Bastard name from her husband Michael Kelly’s band, the Lucky Bastards, best known for their song “Summer Day.”  The band, a hobby for the wildly successful real estate entrepreneur, played small gigs from San Diego to Las Vegas, and enjoyed a cult-like following.  His popular song is the track playing on the Lucky Bastard Saloon's website.

The interior of the historic San Diego Hardware Building on bustling Fifth Avenue has been transformed into a rock ‘n roll and biker buzzed sports bar and eatery with Western flair.  From his perch, the mighty moose reigns over the nearly 10,000 square foot space that can accommodate close to 300 people.   Vintage-inspired circus lights, which spell out Lucky Bastard Saloon, are one of the stunning visual highlights of the saloon. Red and black leather banquettes are perfect for lounging with friends or settle into a genuine leather saddle seat at the 50-foot long bar.  Feast your eyes on the vintage 1942 Flathead Harley Davidson with a suicide shifter in the window and the custom made 100-bottle Jack Daniels chandelier in the entry. Or lock eyes with one of several mounted trophies reminiscent of Nicole’s childhood days in Minnesota. An outdoor patio offers front row seats from which to watch the Gaslamp Quarter scene.

The saloon boasts a full bar. Signature cocktails include the “Sex on the Saddle” made with Malibu Rum , Peach Schnapps, pineapple and cranberry juices;  the “Pickled Tickler” with Jameson Irish Whiskey and Pickle; and  “Lucky’s Woo Woo” with Kettle, One Vodka, Peach Schnapps and Cranberry Juice.

Challenge friends to a match of beer pong, pool or shuffleboard or enjoy the top college and professional sports games of the day on one of the 38 giant screen televisions, several of them 70 inches, which line the walls of the entire saloon.

Casual grub ranges from salads, burgers, chili, sandwiches, and pizzas to desserts. The menu features comfort food items with a twist including chicken and waffles, beer battered California cheese curds, truffle and cheese fries, the “Lucky Bastard” burger with peanut butter and stone fired pizzas fresh out of the pizza oven. Sinful sweets include Nicole’s signature recipe cast iron baked warm chocolate chip cookie topped with vanilla ice cream and a crunchy apple crisp topped with ice cream and caramel. There are also kid friendly options for the “little bastards.”

For more information on Lucky Bastard Saloon, visit the website, follow on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, and be sure to stop in at 840 Fifth Avenue in the Gaslamp.  Current hours are Monday-Friday from 5 pm to 2am, Saturday-Sunday from 11 am  to 2am, with happy hour daily.