Barred: Donna

When: Saturday, 5:46pm.
What did I drink? Daiquiri, Haunted House (Appleton Jamaican Rum, rye, Swedish punsch, ginger syrup, Angostura bitters) $7, 2 oz. Buffalo Trace, $9.

Like Linda or Deborah, Donna is not a young person’s name (even The Donnas, once girl wonders, are now in their 30s). Donnas were teens in the ‘70s, like my aunt’s friend whom she met working at Winchell’s when I was in preschool and recently friended me on Facebook.


It may go without saying, but daytime drinking (weekends and furtive workplace slip-outs) is tailor made for the older set. And Donna, down low on Broadway near the Italian waterfront restaurant everyone knows about, but has never visited, is a perfect place to spend a few daylight hours. On Saturdays there are tacos. Before 7pm, even on weekends, there are discounted drinks, $7 instead of $10, which encouraged me to try the Haunted House, an iced alcoholic mishmash, a.k.a. hipster Long Island Ice Tea.

On the early side, there was a group of gay men visiting from Boston, possibly over 40 but well-preserved, a tan gentleman in a preppy v-neck sweater who had to be in his 50s with a decade-younger woman who had that darker eyebrow, blonde Argentine look, both polished. It was our group, though, celebrating at 41st birthday that raised the average age in the room. Seven out of ten were 40+ (and I was rude enough to ask the two attendees I’d never met before how old they were).

But beware, the Belle and Sebastian, Fleetwood Mac, Steely Dan (Peg!), all favorite soothers, give way after dark, and the sunny, leisurely atmosphere shifts with the arrival of a DJ. Stay too long, and it’s a standing room only scene for people who’ve never known anyone named Donna first-hand.

Was I carded? No doorman, no nonsense.
Age appropriate? To a point.

Leave a Reply