UC Berkeley alums and longtime Berkeley residents know the legend of Spats, the dusty but homey Shattuck Avenue bar (known as Oleg's back in the 70s), which has always been a bizarre, sprawling space with indoor gazebos, a Tiki room, and the vibe of a basement that had been decorated via flea markets. Spats was known for sickly sweet Tiki-esque drinks (think a lot of Midori), and a Hurricane-esque drink with a dry ice element called a Borneo Fogcutter that gave many an undergrad their first worst hangover ever. Now, as Berkeleyside reports, some new investors are looking for an operator to take over the still active liquor license and revive the place under the same name, even though it's been closed shut for the last five years.
The previous owner Philip Taw, began as a dishwasher back in the 70s, and told the new owners stories of Robin Williams playing cards there until 4 a.m., and how the Grateful Dead used to hang there too.
The new owners sound like they have much grander plans for the property which involve building some condos or other housing, but for now they're starting with a revival of Spats though it could just be a ruse in which after failing to find a suitable operator they just move ahead with a demolition, or something.
Eater notes that the property was on the market for $1.75 million in 2011, but it's unlcear what it sold for.
In any event, Berkeley students and residents should be glad something is happening with the long defunct property, which has been sitting there gathering dust and graffiti for way too long.
Bring on the Fogcutters.