Our visit last week to Locke featured a lunch stop at Al’s Place, better known as Al the Wop’s. Al the Wop’s is a regionally famous institution that is long on atmosphere, good food, and drink, and short on upscale decor. It was my first visit there and I was pleased to find one of my favorite Zins available, Michael David’s Seven Deadly, and one of the best BLTs I’ve ever eaten. It was long on bacon and fabulous homemade grilled bread, and I don’t even remember the lettuce or tomato.
Established in 1934, Al is long gone but his persona lives on. Locals and boaters have visited there for years. Since Locke is so small (fewer than 90 residents) tourists, boaters, and bikers make up its clientele. As we headed into Al’s for lunch, a group of Boomer-aged bikers roared into town but they seemed to know about the sign out front:
Please respect the residents of Locke and keep your RPMs down…
No burnouts, please
Don’t park on sidewalk
Thanks for your cooperation.
Al the Wops
The “bike” locked to a front post, right up on the sidewalk flaunts the sign’s plea in clear view of it. This bike is obviously not the type of bike the sign is aimed at but I thought it was kind of funny and ironic.
At one time, if a man entered wearing a necktie, it was cut off and attached to the ceiling. Now, bills of various denominations are either crumpled and stuck to or dangle from the colorful wooden ceiling.