I first stumbled across this beer bar while writing an article about Barack Obama’s unexpected choice of beers. During a campaign swing through North Carolina in May the Democratic Presidential candidate stopped at The Raleigh Times Bar. Instead of diving into a craft beer, what did he order? A Pabst Blue Ribbon. Good times all the times can be had at the Raleigh Times Bar… even if you like PBR.
The building that houses RTB was first built in 1906 and has been home to everything from a shoe shop, jewelry store and office supply store, to the Raleigh Times newspaper (the source of the bar’s name). An extension was built in 1913 to give the newspaper more space. To read the complete history of the building and what they found during the remodel (really old beer bottles), check out their website. The décor of this beer bar, which opened in March of 2006, hearkens back to the days of the newspaper. A myriad of old press clippings and images from their namesake adorn the walls.
Originally RTB only offered eight Belgian beers, but the demand for this type of tasty brew grew exponentially. Eight quickly turned into twelve, which soon turned into twenty four… now they have over 50 available. Despite the fact that they specialize in Belgian beers they also have an array of domestic and imported beers (50+) in bottles and on tap (including the aforementioned PBR). They even carry “vintage brews” (i.e., JW Lees Limited Edition 1998 Harvest Ale), which is something not many other beer bars offer. Providing food is not a requirement to get on the BBL (see the Toronado), but this place has exceptional cuisine and features “gourmet” takes on classic pub grub.
So the next time you’re in Raleigh be sure to swing into RTB. Who knows, maybe you’ll even get to sit in the same chair that Obama sat while he sucked down his PBR.
Submitted by: Eli - The Mad Beer Man