Previous Dive:
Next Dive:

Dystopian Dinner Theatre

Al Mac’s Bar & Grill

2481 Kingston Road

Cliffside Plaza has everything for the modern shopper.   A Rexall; Scotiabank; Dollarama; dentist; Subway Subs; that big canary No Frills; and, most importantly, a dive bar, Al Mac’s Bar & Grill.

Al Mac’s façade sits deceptively docile among those respectable retail chains.  Think of a mountain lion staring at you from the bushes before it drags you in.  But once you’re inside, it reminds me a bit of a modern Gin Lane by William Hogarth: fiesta, food, fun, and fighting. 

If all the world’s a stage then this is dystopian dinner theatre.  Best show starts Friday and Saturday nights.

The Nitty-Gritty:

Jacksoul Poster: No

Price: Reasonable. $4.50 domestic bottles. $3.75 12 oz draught

Service: Friendly and fast. Bartender was quick with a drink and a story of the carnage called her love life. Which seemed to involve all four regulars sitting at the bar.


Scarborough Southwestern

Scarborough is big and full of many distinct areas with their own style and culture.  Keeping up with its dive neighbour, Chick-N-Burger, it dresses in a beer rep ensemble accented by ironic signage.  I think the true irony lies in the fact that their real function is to hide the fist craters in the dry wall. 

Washroom facilities:

Like a tandem bicycle, it can handle two men at once but it’s really awkward.


Spotless.  Except for the spots on the butt of the guy that mooned me.


Billiards, karaoke, jukebox, TVs galore, catfights, fistfights, and the invitation to partake. (I chose to settle my differences with a dance off.)


Earth Day Celebration

I visited on Earth Day and a woman celebrated The Three R’s by reusing her beer bottle as a weapon and striking a young lady in the head with it.

Ladies, there are men in uniform.

Police that is.  They show up to Earth Day celebrations.

Man, this lady should be in uniform.

A bartender who weighed little more than helium broke up a knife fight and administered first aid to one combatant’s stab wound. Everyone survived.

Haute couture

When the stylish enjoy a Campari in Milan’s osterias, they wear Gucci or Versace. When they sip fine wine in Paris cafes, it’s Dior or Hermes. For a cold Blue in the dives of Scarborough, it’s a Rock Eagle t-shirt. Available a few doors down at Kingston Fashion.

Great Dinner Theatre Fare

While wearing your Rock Eagle T-Shirt and watching all the action, be sure to try a burger—big and tasty.  Pizza is pretty good also.

Suggested musical accompaniment:

“Fiesta” By The Pogues

The Last Call:

Dive Bar Mike recommends this bar for anyone banned from the nearby Tara Inn or Victorian Monkey.


Previous Dive:
Next Dive: