In Sundance Square, the good ol’ Red Goose Saloon is one of the last bastions of crazy nightlife – two floors of cheap drinks, loud dance music, loose women (OK, maybe just a hopeful assumption on my part), and cheeseball guys. The service is also great. Barkeeps Priscilla and Henry are two of the best in town.
Simply, the Goose – as it’s affectionately known – is charming in a Sunset Strip-ish Whiskey Bar-ish kinda way.
As crazy as the Goose gets, it’s rarely the site of trouble, probably due to the heavy police presence both outside and inside the club. Most of the time, the cops are stern but respectful. Last week, however, was a different story: They weren’t only downright disrespectful but stern to the point of being intimidating.
At about quarter ’til closing time, the club turned on the house lights, and Goose staffers began collecting everyone’s drinks. At this point, the cops on duty in the upstairs dance parlor usually just stay out of the way. Not this time. One large, ornery policeman strutted through the place while twirling a pair of handcuffs around his index finger. He bowed his chest and scowled at anyone who dared pass him by.
This type of behavior from the fuzz ain’t too cool, especially in a club, but the ‘tude probably had something to do with one of two things: the recent shooting death of Officer Hank Nava or a visit earlier in the night from a major sports celebrity, pro golfer Tiger Woods.
In town doing God knows what, Woods danced like a white boy, was surrounded by supermodel-caliber babeage, and was guarded by what seemed like half of the Fort Worth Police Department.
Don’t mistake me for one of those hyper-paranoid, reflexively anti-authority nut jobs: I’m no felon, so I don’t mind extra blue protection here and there. But I do think that we all deserve to be treated with more respect by law enforcement than what was afforded me and my fellow Red Goose patrons last week.
As I’ve already said, Goose partiers are almost always well-behaved. There may be no better way to piss them off than by sending in a giant clown of a cop to intimidate them.
Red on Black
Paddy Red’s hasn’t been in its downtown spot on Houston Street for long, but the Irish-themed pub is already planning to relocate to the Throckmorton Street address occupied for the moment by the Black Dog Tavern. (Tad Gaither’s East Village-esque hang-out is moving to Crockett Street near the Cultural District, in the area by Fred’s Café where several other clubs are also scheduled to open soon.)
Mark Helms, Paddy Red’s co-owner with wife Angie, wants to clean the place up a lot and turn it back into something close to what it was pre-Black Dog, the Blarney Stone. But, Mark said, “It’s gonna need a lot of work.”
Paddy Red’s current lease is up in mid-January. Not too long ago, when the Helmses began to consider renewing, they heard that their landlord was thinking about selling the building to someone who wanted to triple the rent. Mark and Angie didn’t want to stick around to see if the word on the street was true.
Landlord Matt McEntire, who also owns the Shamrock Pub and Rick O’ Shea’s (and used to run the Blarney Stone), said he’s received more than 140 calls on the current Paddy Red’s location. “It’s a great space,” McEntire said. “I’ve been getting so many calls, it’s almost hard to keep up.”
Mark is hoping to open Paddy Red’s at the new address by March 1. “That’s a hope,” he said. “Because, like I said, we got a lot of work to do down there.”
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Red Goose Saloon
306 Houston St, FW. 817-332-4343.
609 Houston St, FW. 817-332-4747.