Status: There aren’t many venues that can claim to have been around for the last 70 years, but Club ft, a tiny neighborhood bar on Gratiot, can.
While the name has changed over the years -- starting out as Easy Touch Lounge before becoming the Satellite and then Club ft in 1988 -- the humble bar tucked between a Chinese restaurant and a tattoo parlor has remained a subtle staple sitting across from the Eastgate shopping plaza.
Club ft is owned by Frances Tuskey, which is where it gets its name.
Gear: “You have to be dressed,” says Adelle DiPuma, who runs the bar with her mother, Tuskey.
Other than that wide-ranging directive, pretty much anything goes, though you’re more likely to see jeans and tees rather than upscale party clothes.
Mood: The name says club, but ft has more of a corner bar feel which is why Mary Lentini of Highland Park has been a semi-regular customer for the last 10 years. She says she likes that it’s a “neighborhood place,” and while she doesn’t drink, Lentini says she enjoys playing pool there.
“Everybody who wants to be happy, this is the place to be,” says DiPuma who describes the usual crowd as “happy-go-lucky.”
Black and white paintings that make up the dead rockers club -- Jimi Hendrix, Jerry Garcia and Janis Joplin to name a few -- line one wall of the bar separated by carpet squares with images of animals.
“My mom’s artistic,” DiPuma explains.
One long wood-topped bar with a carpeted front takes up about half the space in the bar, which fits 80. A half dozen booths line the opposite wall. A backyard area features a stone patio and bench where people can smoke, and a mural on the back of the building depicts scenes from “Alice in Wonderland.”
Pick me up: There’s a full bar at Club ft, and the most you’ll pay for a bottle of Bud is $2.25. The only food you’ll find here are $3 cheeseburgers which are cooked up on a small grill in the corner of the bar.
Happy hour runs all day Monday and from 4-7 p.m. Tuesday-Sunday.
Entertainment: There’s never a cover at Club ft, but you won’t likely find live music there either. A DJ plays rave music on Sundays, and there’s a pool table, video game and jukebox for your entertainment pleasure.