Glossary of terms used on BarSmart.
BarSmart reviewers will note when a bar has an ATM inside the establishment. We will also note when there is an ATM within easy walking distance (10 minute round trip) to the bar.
Let's face it - sometimes you want to entertain yourself in a bar. This part of the web page is where you can find information on what there is to do at a bar. Categories include arcade games, bowling, darts, fooseball, hockey, pinball, ping pong, pool tables, and video poker.
Every bar has a maximum occupancy rating. Often this is posted in the bar itself. If it is not, the reviewer will do his or her best to come up with an approximate number to reflect the number of people who can safely occupy the bar. The rating itself is generated on a curve. The highest numbers in our database get a 10 and the lowest numbers get a 1.
Bottled drink selection is based on the number of import, domestic, and local beers available. Bars who only specialize in import beers will get a lower rating because we feel that a large selection should include many different beers from many different sources.
We judge a bar's cleanliness based on how clean everything in the bar is. This includes; floor, ceiling, walls, table tops, bar top(s), glasses, bar paraphernalia, and even the bartender. This does not include the bathroom as we have a separate category for that.
This is the kind of bar you would most likely find a younger crowd, from a nearby college.
This kind of bar that attracts fans of country music.
Some bars charge a cover price. This cover price can fluctuate throughout the week.
BarSmart will make every effort to let you know what credit cards, if any, that are accepted at each establishment.
We judge a bar's crowd based on the number of people the place has on the day of the week we are there. Naturally bars reviewed on a Monday will have a smaller crowd then a bar reviewed on a Saturday. We well, of course, adjust for this and we will also ask patrons about the crowd on other nights. While a bar can be overcrowded, this will not negatively effect this particular rating. We will note it in the 'notes' section, and it will effect the 'looks' rating instead.
This kind of bar has an area used for dancing.
This rating is created by the size of the dance floor, the style of the dance floor, and the number of people who actually use the dance floor for dancing. Other things that can effect this rating include how well the dance area is maintained, the location of the nearest drink station, and lighting. Bars that do not have a dance floor will get a "N/A" instead of a rating.
Domestic beers are considered to be beers that are mass-produced in the United States. We generally use Budweiser as a standard, and if they bar does not carry that, we will use Miller Genuine Draft or a beer of similar price and quality.
A draft price is the price of a beer, in it's category (local, domestic, or import), in a 16oz glass. If the bar does not have a 16oz glass we will attempt to note that in the 'notes' section, however we will use the price charged for the nearest sized glass.
Draft beers are rated much like bottled beers. It is, however, easier to get a higher rating in the draft category because so many bars have a very small number of beer taps.
This is the area where you can find what drinks are on special and on what day. Please keep in mind that specials change often, and the accuracy of a drink special will depend on when we last reviewed the bar.
This area is where we will list food specials, and entertainment acts.
Exotic is reserved for bars that feature exotic dancers (male and female) as the main form of entertainment.
A family rating is given out to a bar that is also a restaurant where we feel you would enjoying bringing your family. Usually a family bar will specialize in food more then drink.
This kind of bar welcomes and encourages gay patrons.
Many bars close early if the crowd is very thin or the bar is empty. We will try to note this if it is the policy of the bar.
Imported beers are considered to be beers that are mass-produced in other countries. We generally use Corona as a standard, and if the bar does not carry that , we will use Molson Golden or a beer of similar price and quality.
If the bar has a jukebox, it can be a good way for you to discover what kind of crowd will be in the bar. We will go through the selections on the jukebox and note what the major selections of music are. Selections include 70's, 80's, 90's, Alternative, Classical, Country, Dance, Folk, Industrial, Metal, Rap, Rock, Pop, and Oldies.
Lighting is generally judged on how well or poorly lit the bar is. Bars that are too bright good a poor rating and so do bars that are too dim. Overall lighting can also include dance floor lighting if it's used to help illuminate the entire bar or set the theme for the bar.
Local beers are considered to be beers that are mass-produced in or near the city closest to the bar. For example, in Pittsburgh, we would use Iron City, IC Light, and if the bar had neither of these we would expand our range to include Rolling Rock.
Patrons at this type of bar usually live in the same community that the bar is located.
Location is broken down into State, City, and Region (north, south, east, west) and then finally area within that region, defined by municipality name, city district or boro.
This is the Look & Feel rating. It is based on a reviewer's general impression of the entire establishment. It will include everything from staff to customers, and also take into account items from other review sections as well as some that do not have a rating section of their own
This rating is based on the variety of mixed drinks you can get in the bar. This is different from the 'shots' category because some mixed drinks require fruit juices, condiments, and special liquors to be made properly. If a martini doesn't have an olive, it is not made properly.
The price for a mixed drink is generated using the bar's price for a 'rum & Coke' mixed using bottom shelf rum.
This type of bar is usually a local hangout that also has a regular crowd of retired individuals.
This number is generated by adding up all the other rating numbers and taking the average. As you can see getting an overall rating of 10 is extremely difficult, which we think is just fine.
The parking rating is based on how likely you are to get a spot near the establishment you want to visit and, if applicable, how much you will have to pay to park there.
Pitcher prices are the price of beer, in it's category (local, domestic, or import), in a standard large sized pitcher. If the bar does not have the larger sized pitchers, we will attempt to not that in the 'notes' section, however we will use the price charged for the nearest sized pitcher.
We give this rating out to bars that have large food menus and eat-in facilities.
This rating takes into consideration a number of things, including cleanliness. The size of the restroom in comparison to the size of the bar and crowd will generally be the biggest deciding factor. However the distance of the restroom from the drink area is also import. Restrooms should also have mirrors, stalls for each toilet or urinal, and should not be cramped. Restrooms that have a restroom valet will usually have that noted in the 'notes' section. A restroom rating can be judged on the review of just one (male or female) restroom.
These bars generally have a lot of Rock & Roll on the jukebox or have live bands during the week.
Security is the hardest rating to generate. It is largely based on how safe one feels while visiting the bar. This is usually determined by the type of crowd and compared to the type of security or amount of wait staff on duty. College bars should generally have a visible security staff, and smaller local bars should have someone on duty who looks like they can handle a rowdy crowd. Please remember that this is possibly our most subjective review area, and is based completely on the opinion of the reviewer.
The service rating is judge by how well the review is served at the bar. Did they get the correct order in a timely fashion? Did they get charged the correct price and did they get the correct change? Was the server friendly and did he or she represent the bar in an appropriate manner? Service issues the reviewer notices while on site can also effect this rating.
The price for a shot of alcohol is generated using the bar's price for a shot of bottom shelf rum.
This rating is generated by the variety of alcohol visible behind the bar or on the menu. Bars that specialize in single malt scotches will get a higher rating then bars that have a standard selection of bottom shelf liquor, but will not do as well as a bar that has a large variety of vodka and single malts.
Using the bar's price for a single glass of brand-name soda generates the price for a soda.
Sports bars are usually filled with sports banners and paraphernalia as well as televisions that show sporting events.
This rating is not to be confused with Service. Service is how well the patron can expect to be served, but the staff rating is based on how well the bar is running. Is the bar understaffed? Could they use a doorman? These things are important and noted her. Staff attire and overall attitude can change this rating as well.
This is the type of bar where ties are worn and where the drinks are not cheap. It is not unusual to find an upscale bar with an enforced dress code.
We will link a bars web page from our page for free. We do require that they open in a new window, and links back to our page are appreciated but not required.
*Budweiser and Rolling Rock are registered trademarks of the Anheiser Busch Brewing Company.
*Iron City is a registered trademark of the Pittsburgh Brewing Company.
*Molson is a registered trademark of Molson Canada.