It’s an embarrassment of riches over at Atlanta’s little gay-owned alternabar. Despite – or perhaps due to– Grant Henry’s aw-shucks approach to kitchy casual nightlife, he keeps winning unsought accolades. He’s done it again. Twice.
USA Today’s 10 Best singles out Atlanta for some love and places Henry (photo) and his PeeWee Herman-Jesus-MLK-laden Sister Louisa’s Church of the Living Room & Ping Pong Emporium in its No 6 Slot.
Sister Louisa's Church of the Living Room & Ping Pong Emporium
Sister Louisa's Church of the Living Room & Ping Pong Emporium doesn't serve craft beer and high-end cocktails. In fact, most folks are guzzling a PBR or sipping on a Spiritual Sangria, the bar's signature drink. Church, as it is referred to by locals, makes a debut on the top 10 list because of its unique campy quality. The space packs in tacky, sometimes offensive, religious art and tchotchkes and attracts a young, trendy crowd. The space looks small until you head upstairs. A large open room, with corner windows shines light from Edgewood, near Old Fourth Ward, on sofas, a Ping-Pong table, and ample space to chill. The bar has also been known to draw various celebrities when they film in the city–Ben Stiller has reportedly come on multiple occasions.
Meanwhile, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s Access Atlanta comes up with a new way to praise the bar. Church was an easy choice to include in Best Non-Touristy Places to Take Tourists in Atlanta.
Drink the sangria at Sister Louisa’s Church. OK, it’s not really a church. Sister Louisa’s is a cozy neighborhood bar with a mean sangria and $4 PBR Tall Boys. Head up the narrow stairwell to lounge on the sofas or catch a game of pingpong. The folk art will either have you in stitches or offend you. Regardless, it’s sure to capture your attention.
It seems that being lauded is all in a day’s work for Henry and the loyal parishioners of “Church.” In February, it was called the Best Bar in Georgia, and in January, the bar was named one of the Coolest Businesses in America. Last year, it was among the Best Bars in Atlanta, not once but twice, and was honored as the Coolest Kitsch Bar in the World.