BUTTE, MT - We all have our favorite spots to go to.

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Depending on the day, night, occasion, group size, and level of drunkenness from the pre-gaming prior, where you and your group go usually ends up being someone's favorite place. "Let's go to [redacted], they give me free drinks!" or, "Have you guys been to [redacted]? It's so sick." My favorite is the "Guys, trust me, let's go to [redacted], I know the bartender and they'll hook us up!" Notice the trend? Unless the group is feeling extra adventurous or you're in a new town, the group will normally choose a place that's familiar, understood, and where the people who run it are friendly and cool.

When you enter the Slainte Butte America Pub on S Montana St for the first time, I almost guarantee you will experience these emotions, just as I assuredly did the first time I walked in. The bar just reeks of freshness, especially for an area that is dominated by traditional-style pubs, dives, and speakeasies. Slainte has one of the more welcoming vibes to it, even when I walked in clearly looking like I just got out of a bar in West Los Angeles. I adapted to Montana years ago, but I will always be prideful of what I wear—just as I'm sure you would be if you moved from Montana to California. Sorry, should've thrown a trigger warning there, try and hold back your vomit.

Anyway, I think the welcoming atmosphere Slainte emanates comes partially from the stellar interior design work. The front window in particular, which features huge floor-to-ceiling windows, greenery from real plants, and tables perched gently against them, is something that just screams "come and hang out, no biggie." Plus, the large area full of ample seating and the massive U-shaped bar beckons all who are looking for a nice, calm time. (Though, I'm sure the place can get down.)

Credit: Slainte Butte America Pub/Facebook
Credit: Slainte Butte America Pub/Facebook

Accentuating the atmosphere are the awesome people who operate the cozy joint. Though I've only been in there a few times, the staff seem to remember me—whether they do or not. On top of that, when I went in there recently to catch a basketball game (which Slainte is perfect for), I was upfront and hanging out at the bar, enjoying a cocktail and one of their famous Beer Brats. Multiple patrons would come up alongside me to respectfully order their drinks, and whether they were male, female, or somewhere in between, the bartenders seemed to know each and every one of them, remembering their order from weeks ago or just asking how a member of their family is doing.

Slainte has some more awesome features that extend beyond the great staff, great food, and great drinks. Not only do they have an upstairs patio open in the summer to give you a peek at those delicious sunny rays, but they also have a pretty big arcade that isn't centered around gambling! No disrespect to those who do gamble, but it is very refreshing to see the classic arcade games available so I can lose my money the old-fashioned way: quarter by quarter. Plus, if you're feeling up to it, they'll also feature some live music from time to time. But they all add to the overall experience and remind you that you're sitting in a bastion of individuality.

And, as patrons, that's all we really want, right? Being human, we want to feel noticed, unique, and perhaps even a little special. We like going into places with friends and showing them our favorite spot to hang out because it feels like a little slice of us, portrayed by the friendly faces who say, "Hey man, good to see you again!" Remember that show Cheers from back in the day? The bar where everyone knows your name? Slainte is like that, and I love it for that.

I mean, it's right there in the name. Do you know what the word "slainte" is used for in Ireland?

See other Butte Beats here.

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