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Downtown has Hostesses, Exotic Food and Live Music

By: Dinner Gong

Date Posted: 2000-08-25

Downtown is a nightclub that has a lot of steel bars inside and dim lighting. The Jailhouse Rock atmosphere is augmented by many album covers of a certain era, hung on the walls and decorating its entrance, under golden studded pinpoint lights. There is The Beatles’ last album Let it Be, Janis Joplin’s debut, the Rolling Stones’ Tattoo You and many others. The club is open from 7 to 2 am every day except Mondays and musicians play live every Saturday and Sunday.

There is bar seating, cozy alcoves wall sofas and attractive women to meet. There are five or six of these at the moment and more will be soon be brought from the Philippines. Downtown’s owner is also planning to employ an American hostess. These ladies can speak Japanese and English and the idea is that they can first appeal to customers from the military bases, who have to be home by midnight. Then a later crowd can come to enjoy their charms, which would most likely be Japanese men. This sort of place where it costs ¥1000 to buy a hostess a drink but no pressure to indulge in anything more than light conversation, if that is what he wants, is mostly seen in Japanese nightclub districts.

So Downtown, with its Anglo-American rock ambience, wood paneling, steel bars and elegantly dressed hostesses is something of a new idea. It serves a standard variety of soft drinks. Beer here is ¥600 and includes San Miguel. There is a selection of exotic fruit juices: mango, orange, pineapple, cranberry, guyanbano and buko. Its cocktail list is extensive, including Black and White Russian, Blue Kamikaze, Tequila Sunrise, Strawberry Daiquiri, Hurricane, Downtown Special, Brain Eraser, Sex on the Beach and Surfers on Acid. They cost ¥800. The food at Downtown includes Western favorites like Chicken-in-the basket and Fish and Chips. There is Pizza, Hot Wings and Chicken Nuggets, Tacos, Cheese Gratin and various snacks like fries. Prices are reasonable, between ¥500 and ¥900.

There is also a selection of Filipino food from ¥600 to ¥1000, including Adobo, chicken in spicy ginger sauce; Calderetta, beef stew with carrots and peppers; Chicharon Bituka, dried pork intestines; Dinuguan, a broth of pork blood, liver and other organs; Lumpia small crisp spring rolls with a red dip; Pansit, dry noodles, onions, beans, carrots and sausage segments; Sisig or pork mask, slices of pigs’ ears, liver and onion.

DG tucked into Dinuguan, Lumpia and Chicharon Bituka. His companions liked the spring rolls but found the other two dishes rather too gruesome for their taste. Downtown customers who are Filipino would not be troubled by this carnivore’s feast. People from other lands might want to concentrate on the other parts of the menu. Some customers come to Downtown for a drink and perhaps a snack. For others though, food may be a secondary reason for coming to this nightclub.

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