Raise the Bar: Why the Hideout is the classic American neighborhood bar

If you're looking for somewhere with cheap beer, decent specials, a ton of TVs, and friendly service, the Hideout is your place. The Clawson bar doesn't have any gimmicks, it's not trendy, and you probably won't see "craft" anywhere on the menu, but it's decent and clean, and sometimes that's all that matters.

Recently, they upped their offerings on tap, but you still won't feel overwhelmed by hundreds of choices. Most of their handles are national brands such as Labatt, Bud, Miller, Coors, and Molson. They also have Guinness, Stella, and Blue Moon, and as for their craft options, there's Hopitcal Illusion and Rochester Mills' Cornerstone IPA, and Snapshot, Fat Tire, Ranger, and Rampant from New Belgium Brewing Co.

Behind the bar there's a full selection of liquor, so feel free to order your favorite cocktail. There are drink specials every night that hardly ever cost more than $3, further demonstrating that drinking here is dirt cheap. On Thursdays well drinks are $2. Point proven.

It's a standard bar in many ways. There's plenty of beer and booze and the food, while good, doesn't stray far from your typical bar fare. That's OK. Sometimes you just want a juicy burger, steak fries, and a cold one. And the Hideout delivers.

Stop by for lunch and there's a chance you can get out for under $10, which, let's be honest, is rare these days. You can get a burger, fries, and a Bud Light for $7, but they have a full menu outside of that too, including appetizers, salads, sandwiches, and pizza. We didn't spy anything that was over $10 on the menu, and the portions are fair. There's a decent midday crowd, which is nice when you're eating and drinking at a bar at 12:30 p.m. and don't want to feel completely bad about yourself.

In all seriousness, the Hideout is friendly and accessible. There is a lot of seating (we really like the front dining room with lots of windows and sunny sunshine). There's a pool table, darts, a couple video games, and even a 110-inch jumbo screen. It's certainly in the upper echelon of neighborhood bars, where you probably know most of the other folks drinking there, and if you're a newcomer, someone's going to buy to a beer, just to be nice.

The Hideout isn't much more than the classic American neighborhood bar, and it succeeds in being just that.