Ed Spot #2: The Billiard Club

"Live, lounge and play" at one of Whyte's most relaxed highlights

BY EMIL TIEDEMANN

In the heart of the heart of Edmonton--the marvellously concentrated Whyte Ave.--is The Billiard Club, a lounge-slash-pool hall-slash-cafè situated on the second floor of Old Strathcona's historic (& retired) Post Office building (est. 1912). You can't miss it...it's the only clock tower on the legendary avenue.

When you first walk into the doors of the 97-year-old structure you have the choice of continuing into Chianti's (Italian) Cafè & Restaurant, or detouring upstairs into our feature spot, which has been operating there for more than a decade now. Darkened hardwood floors and unpolished brick walls welcome you into the spacious quarters, which is actually separated (by curtains) into two areas, and topped off with a back-view patio.

A friend and I each ordered a highball ($5.50) at the double back-to-back bar before making our way to one of the tables near the windows that overlook the busy ave. Behind us was a cozy leather sofa seating section that shared its corner with the still-functioning clock & bell mechanism, which is a historic site of E-town.

Our waitress was more than adequate, despite being the only one in the bar during the Wednesday evening, and our food arrived quickly. My salt & pepper wings ($9.95) were better than I would've guessed, and my buddy's grilled Capicolla sandwich ($10.95) left him just as satisfied. We each downed another highball before asking for our bill.

The Billiard Club lives up to its name, home to eight pool tables, in addition to a couple arcade machines and plenty of spots to sit and enjoy anything from their full bar and delicious--yet reasonably-priced--menu. By 10:00 in the evening the lounge transforms into a nightclub, as staff turn up the music and clear tables to make room for a dance floor. Now if we could only get those windows to open up into the ambiance of Edmonton's most electric strip.

The Rundown:
Location:
2nd Floor, 10505 Whyte (82) Ave.
Phone: 780-432-0335/ 780-433-3654 (bookings)
Hours: 5PM-2AM (Sun-Tues)/ 4PM-2AM (Wed-Sat)
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