Funny business

Staff Writer
Columbus Alive

Everything's funny to Ashleigh Fensch.

Especially requests for bizarre mixed drinks and firemen threading through a crowded bar - both things that have happened since she started bartending at Park Street Tavern this summer.

"We were like, 'What?'" said Fensch, laughing.

She's bartended for seven years, including at the original Buffalo Wild Wings on Campus, Gordon Biersch and a Hawaiian bar during her time in school there, and she's already at home in the Arena District live-music venue.

Now, she's in spa school at Ohio State and hopes to complete her communications degree after that, bartending through it all.

So what's up with the firemen?

My first week, I'm bartending on a Saturday and all the sudden, like, eight fire trucks show up, and there are these firemen with axes knocking on the door. Some girl called - we don't know if it was from here or where - and said the place was burning down. We're busy, there's a band playing, and we're all like, "What is going on?"

What's this place like on, um, a normal night?

I would say what draws people in here is the live music Tuesday through Saturday. The atmosphere in here is great, just real chill. Especially because the area we're in, some of them are very clubby. It really depends on what you're looking for, but this is the type of place, I think, where anyone can come in and have a good time.

What's the most common drink order?

It's either beer or someone's doing just a liquor and a mixer. And we do a lot of shots. We don't have to make a lot of martinis or "high-maintenance" drinks, I guess you would say.

So you guys don't have a blender here?

No. So no frozen drinks either, which is a miracle. I love it.

Since you've been bartending, have there been any drinks that threw you for a loop?

Anymore, probably not. Sometimes you do hear some random things where, it's not even that it throws you for a loop, it's more like it sounds disgusting. Somebody was drinking tequila and tonic water or soda, and it just kind of made you gag.

What's kept you in bartending?

It's the money. You make good money bartending ... as much as a 9-to-5 salary job ... and I think that's why I've done it for so long.

Where else do you like to hang out?

I like Press Grill, and in Grandview, I like the Black Horse and Grandview Cafe. I like the little local, low-key bars.

Park Street Tavern