food & drink

Belly Up

By Jared Curtis


Kathy’s On Hickman

Friendly staff keeps patrons coming back

Dives or self-proclaimed “hole-in-the-wall” establishments are normally driving forces in the bar scene. When you walk into a dive bar, it’s filled with a veteran staff, colorful customers and an opening date before 2007. I’ve been a dive bar connoisseur for years and have featured many of these fine establishments in “Belly Up” long before Juice came up with their “D.M. Dives” column. So I was disappointed in myself for not featuring an establishment like Kathy’s On Hickman before. A great mixture of customers and some of the friendliest staff you’ll find in town keep its small space warm and inviting.

“This place opened up as Kathy’s in 1991, but it had been numerous bars before. The building originally opened as a gas station,” said manager Kathy Bryant. “I’ve bartended all over Hickman and seen the bar scene evolve. Hickman Road is a great spot for a bar.”

Inside you’ll find a U-shaped bar surrounded by a handful of tables and booths. The bar has a few TVs, a pool table, dartboard and a “Silver Strike Bowling” video game, but patrons seem more at ease just hanging out and shooting the breeze over a few drinks.

“We have a lot of regulars, but new customers stop in all the time and then become regulars,” Bryant said. “We have a very eclectic crowd. From blue collar to white collar, everyone is welcome.”

Kathy’s offers different drink specials every day and free appetizers (except Wednesday) during cocktail hour (2 to 7 p.m.). On Monday, patrons can enjoy $4.50 pitchers and $1.25 Schnapps. The Schnapps special also runs on Tuesday. Wednesday is one of the bar’s two steak nights (also Saturday from noon to 4 p.m.). From 5:30 to 8:30 p.m., enjoy an 8-ounce prime sirloin, baked potato and two pieces of Texas toast for $7.75. The bar hosts karaoke on Thursday from 9 p.m. to close, with $2.25 domestic bottles. On Saturday, enjoy $4.50 pitchers from noon to 5 p.m. and $2.25 domestic bottles from noon to 7 p.m. Cure your weekend hangover on Sunday with $2.25 Bloody Marys and $2.25 domestic bottles. The bar also features a shot of the month for $1.50.

“We have a secret marinade for our steaks that came with the bar, and I’ve only changed one small ingredient. Customers love it and always try to get the recipe,” Bryant said. “My Bloody Marys are also well known. I make my own mix.”

The bar will host a customer appreciation Christmas party (date TBD), which offers cocktail hour prices all day and plenty of hors d’oeuvres. The bar will also celebrate New Year’s Eve with free champagne toast at midnight.

“Our parties are a great way to give back to our customers,” she said.

The staff at Kathy’s realize quality is better than quantity and are more concerned about the customers than the fancy décor or booming sound system.

“Everybody is friendly here, and you’ll have no problem striking up a great conversation,” Bryant said. “No matter when you stop in, you’ll have fun.” CV


Caption: Bartenders Lori King and Matt O’Neal pour numerous shots at Kathy’s on Hickman, 6705 Hickman Road. Hours are Monday through Friday, 2 p.m. to 2 a.m., Saturday and Sunday, noon to 2 a.m. 270-9921.

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