In case you missed it, big kids who want to play video games while drinking alcohol have been losing their minds over this bar + arcade combo for the last year. And the time has finally come.
Abari owner Zach Pulliam is a pro gamer with a genuine love for arcades. And he really knows his stuff. When I told him I grew up with a pinball machine in my basement, he asked me what it was and then actually knew exactly which one I was talking about when I said Firepower.
Abari’s game arsenal is made up of pinball machines, arcade games and consoles.
The living room set up is like something straight out of your childhood basement with leather couches, an old tube TV and Mario Kart.
Zach sources games from all over and then rehabs and stress tests them to make sure they’re ready for regular play.
The oldest pinball machine on the floor is Taxi (1988) but Zach’s got an older one from the 70s in the back getting prepped to hit the floor.
The bar will feature beer and a small list of craft cocktails.
Bartender James Murphy is well versed in the craft cocktail scene. He makes his own bitters, sour, ginger beer and other mixers. He hasn’t finalized Abari’s cocktail list but says to expect 3-4 specialties that he plans to serve in the hodgepodge of retro glasses he’s collected over the last year.
Not sure how to play arcade games with a drink in your hand?
There’s a cupholder for that. Grab a JDT Kaddy and carry on.
The vibe is casual and the decor is understated but there’s killer art over the bar and more on the way.
The killer 3-piece display over the bar is by local artist John Hairston Jr. and Murphy says unstoppable duo Matt Hooker and Matt Moore will be creating a moveable mural for the blank wall by the seating area.
The games run on quarters (no special tokens) so bring cash for the change machine.
Abari’s grand opening will be Saturday, March 26. Find it at 1721 N. Davidson Street.
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