I've realized that the idea of men and woman huddled around a bar on a weekend night brings comfort to some and horror to others. What about people who like to dance? And to go beyond that, what about people who want to see drag shows, or dress in black and don glow-sticks and get lost in the sounds of house music? I suppose I'm talking about quote-unquote alternative lifestyles. Or simply gay, bi, lesbian, confused, fetish-esque, straight, conservative, liberal, atheist, asexual, gothic, church-going, etc. Or in other words, everyone.
TiLT Nightclub and Ultralounge (444 Central Avenue, 232-8440) is definitely a place worth checking out. You would be in the grand minority if you weren't dancing, and it's hard not to with live DJs Thursday through Saturday. If live entertainment is more your thing, then check out the drag shows or head over for one of the Porno Pictionary nights. With the teaser, "You will get a card at the door...", aren't you even the slightest bit curious?
The Vertex Club (169 North Chestnut Street, 232-5498) is known as Rochester's gothic club, which the dictionary defines as emphasizing the grotesque, mysterious, and desolate. The owner does her best to create a gothic scene; inside Vertex you'll find flaming lanterns, horror posters, and artwork (some from local artists), and a private seating room upstairs in secluded "cage." Far from gloomy, Vertex hosts DJs Thursdays through Fridays for 18+ crowds. Pool tables, darts and an outdoor patio can also be found.
Nasty D's (140 Alexander Street, 256-1000), formerly RJ's, boasts that it is "the busiest gay bar in the city." With live entertainment, karaoke, drag shows, pool tables, numerous TVs, and a dance floor upstairs with DJs on the weekends, Nasty D's does a good job of creating a bar and club all in one. It also offers a full menu, including the "Nothin' Like a Quickie" section of tasty appetizers.
My favorite touch at Nasty D's is the large bowl of condoms conveniently resting on the bar. I think they're on to something there.