Music » Bars & Clubs

Best Place to Play Pinball

CBGB

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From the multi-machine majesty of Dave and Buster's to the simplicity of the corner coffee shop, there are many places in St. Louis to play pinball. So what makes CBGB, a smallish bar with one lone machine, the best place to play? One word: atmosphere. On any night but Sunday aspiring wizards and seasoned ballers alike can enjoy a game for 25 cents a pop while drinking on the cheap and listening to a wonderfully eclectic and varied music selection (anything from Sun Ra and Coltrane to David Bowie to the Freestyle Fellowship) provided by the 100-CD carousel behind the bar. The crowd is as eclectic as the music, but everyone is fairly mellow and appears with Cheers-ish frequency -- especially people like raconteur and liver of the High Life Dancin' Larry. On a slow night, bartenders Matt Wagner and Eric Hall are usually up for challenges on the machine, but be forewarned: The majority of those high scores are Wagner's, and he gives no quarter except when asked for change.

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