by Alia Tawil




Union Pool

Don't Judge a Bar by Its Cover



With its modest front, Union Pool seems like another small dive bar in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, but the steady stream of people coming in on Friday night begs to differ. Once inside, the space literally takes off. The first bar is large and backlit like a swimming pool at night. A dj loosens up the in-coming crowd, playing nostalgia from Stevie Wonder to Wu-Tang Clan. After room one, the bar opens up into an outdoor garden, complete with a authentic taco truck and a lily pond. The majority gathers here to mingle and drop off their beer bottles in one of the recycling bins. Strategically placed “Pool Staff” loiter to keep the peace and people-watch.


Tucked around the corner and completely oblivious to the garden is the music venue. A cozy red-paneled room opens into a music hall reminiscent of those in the Wild West. A guilded gold border strung with stage lights frames the stage. A staircase leading up to the balcony is off-limits to all but the sound engineers. The bar bears a long mirror behind it and two vintage crystal chandeliers droop over the patrons as they order. Tonight, Matt Bauer's record release completes the western theme as he croons with an 8-piece band and his banjo.


All shows are posted on their myspace page, complete with links to the bands and an option to buy tickets. The intimacy of the space, the charm of the décor, and the variety available at Union Pool makes it appealing for more than neighborhood.

Union Pool is located at 484 Union Avenue on the corner of Union & Meeker, in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.

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© Melt Magazine 2009