A reporter attempts to drink everything at the all-you-can-drink bar in St. Louis

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Daniel Hill, the music editor for the Riverfront Times, the St. Louis alt-weekly, is a journalistic hero. I don’t say this just because I used to work with him (though I am proud of the RFT and the work we did there). In 2014, when the Gathering of the Juggalos came to St. Louis, he spent a weekend camping there and live-blogged the experience. That is dedication.

So naturally when the news broke last month about the St. Louis opening of Open Concept, an all-you-can drink bar owned by the city’s recorder of deeds, Hill (accompanied by a designated driver editor) was on the scene.

For me — and, indeed, many of my fellow St. Louis citizens — the idea of an all-you-can-drink bar provides a potential penny-saving opportunity.

And so it was with thriftiness in mind that I set myself out to get to the bottom of things in regard to St. Louis’ most hotly contested new bar, purchasing a block of three hours (the most you can buy at once) on Open Concept’s website with the express goal of seeing just how much alcohol I could shovel down my gullet for $30.


His plan was to drink the entire menu.

As a control, Hill also visited his neighborhood dive bar and an Applebee’s to see how much he could drink for $30 in a similar amount of time. There was intoxication. There was Pedialyte. There was vomiting. There was a social media outing, which compromised his reporting and required an undercover return trip disguised in a hot dog costume. And, finally, there was an excellent read.