Eastern Pennsylvania’ Real Speakeasies Sound Really Depressing

Yeah, it was nothing like this.
Yeah, it was nothing like this. Photo: Marlo Marketing

New Yorkers who still wait an hour to pass through a hidden door in a pretend phone booth for some expertly made pre-Prohibition cocktails may be jazzed to learn that bona fide speakeasies routinely materialize just across state lines, or, at least in eastern Pennsylvania, but they actually sound kind of miserable: State police say they infiltrated and raided an otherwise unassuming Spanish restaurant, which was located right under Reading City Hall’s nose; offerings included no Manhattans but plenty of joyless $1 shots of unidentified liquor, seven-ounce beers retrieved from an under-the-table cooler, and copious amounts of generic malt liquor. In all, authorities say they seized 25 gallons of beer, a liter of liquor, and the speakeasy’s one-night haul of $158.25, or roughly three P.D.T. drinks and two Crif Dogs with tater tots on the side. [Eagle]