Blackie’s By the Sea Has the Coldest Beer in Town–And the Oldest Men

There’s a framed sign dated 2013 hanging on the wall at Blackie’s By the Sea, hidden among decades of old photos and nautical taxidermy, commemorating a man for 50 years of drinking there. Let that soak in for a moment. This man has swilled at this seaside bar longer than the average American marriage lasts. He was sipping beer here before the Beatles invaded America. How’s that for commitment?

I’ve never met the man honored, but I imagine he’d tell me that Blackie’s hasn’t changed much since it opened in 1953, even as Newport Beach turned from a playground for the rich into a playground for the ultra-rich. The biggest difference is Zooport is nowadays an all-seasons destination, so the bar is open year-round instead of just from June to August, as in the 1950s and ’60s. But it has remained the Peninsula’s ultimate spot, only taking cash and serving $3 beers as the photos on the wall fade with age and from the sunlight that shines in from the beach through the open doors and windows. The mounted fish, life preservers...

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