Spartos’s social calendar goes to the dogs—literally. One lonely day, she steps into the Evil Pet Store only to find her soul mate caged and chasing his tail in circles. Shortly thereafter, she and the rescued pooch—dubbed Pierre the Papillon—launch their new adventure-filled life together: digging, scratching, wagging their tails, and, of course, guzzling beer. And what a life it is!
The downside: Most watering holes do not welcome man’s best friend. So lucky for them that the Siamese cat who guards the ELEVENTH ST. BAR (510 East 11th Street, 982-3929) doesn’t seem to care if her furry brethren slobber all over the joint. Spartos and the Petit Frenchman take a corner booth in the back room, which has the feel of a disreputable speakeasy with its curtain partition and old-timey piano. There’s no table service, so the duo trot over to the beautiful wooden bar, where the friendly grad-student patrons praise Pierre’s remarkably large ears. After the hoopla subsides, they beg for pints of seriously strong Sierra Celebration ($5). Not one to share, Spartos decides she had better claim Pierre’s draught, fending him off with a cheesy bone, which he happily gnaws on. After some slurping and chewing, the BFFs bound home for some kibble and a nap.
It’s a dog day Saturday afternoon, so Spartos and Pierre take a nice long stroll to the BROOKLYN ALE HOUSE (103 Berry Street, Brooklyn, 718-302-9811), a/k/a the Dog Bar. There, Spartos trades four-legged tales with the bartenders, who pour her a crisp Brooklyn Pennant ($4). Apparently a puppy had gone number two on the floor the previous night, and a patron who stepped in it was none too happy, but the bartenders don’t seem phased, and they even buy Spartos a round. Then the human-canine pair stake out a window seat, where they keep watch on the aging intellectuals and young rocker types that populate the neighborhood bar. Yet for all the shag hairdos, there are no shaggy pals for Pierre. That is, until a skittish weimaraner tiptoes in. For those uninitiated with the breed, she’s the high-strung pooch a neurotic Parker Posey and Michael Hitchcock own in Best in Show, Pierre’s favorite comedy. (The Petit Frenchman’s also a big Godfather fan; he gets very agitated when Luca Brasi is put to sleep “with the fishes.”) Needless to say, Mr. Busy Bee shows no interest in Spartos’s gregarious tyke, and so they sniff out other pleasures.
Spartos and Pierre chase each other all the way to Carroll Gardens to the best bar in all of dogdom, SPARKY’S ALE HOUSE (481 Court Street, Brooklyn, 718-624-5516). It’s a pretty quiet scene for a Saturday evening, but that just leaves more room for Lil’ Bow Wow to romp in. They claim seats at one of the cool retro red tables, and proceed to scratch their heads at the flabbergastingly large selection of regional micros and international mainstays. Spartos laps up a fruity Red Tail Ale ($4.75) from California and a rich, malty Rogue Ale ($4.75) from Oregon while Pierre chomps on a biscuit doled out by the welcoming barkeep. Then, much to the little guy’s excitement, a sweet rottweiler saunters in, and the two happily lick, mount, and paw at each other. Ah, the life of a dog.