Joe’s Place is probably the most diverse bar in Iowa City. On a typical night you are likely to see a mix of UI students, university faculty, and locals of all ages. While it is not the “hipster” bar that many students would like to believe, the crowd is definitely the opposite of what you will find at Brothers.
Joe’s place is a lot bigger than it appears from the street. With two bars across three rooms, and an outdoor beer garden there is always somewhere to sit or stand even when the bar is at its busiest. The environment is very relaxed and casual, which makes it easy to sit with friends and enjoy a conversation, play pool, darts, foosball and video games without many distractions. It is also a very affordable bar with $3 tall boy beers on Fridays and Saturdays and $2.50 specialty shots. The bar is also proud that it is one of the oldest drinking establishments in Iowa City and has never needed to charge a cover.
Besides being affordable and fun, the staff at Joe’s Place are great with customers and do their best to make sure you are having a good time. If you are sitting at a table waitresses regularly come around to make sure you have everything you need, and the bartenders enjoy recommending different shots to try and like to join the fun and take one with you.
I have met a lot of people at UI that will say they have no interest in going to Joe’s because they have some preconceived notion that it is only for “hipsters” or is not student friendly. If you are reading this and are one of those people, I highly recommend you give Joe’s a chance and see for yourself what a great time it is.