A chess bar? Not as crazy as it sounds

I don’t think this is as insane as it might initially appear:

Melbourne couple Jasmine Costello and Richard Putnam hope to fill this gap in the market after winning a $10,000 business grant to start a chess bar they are calling “Chess-Nuts”.

“We envisage an inviting lounge where chess lovers, or anyone, really, come to play chess with a mate or a stranger and enjoy a coffee or beer,” Ms Costello said.

Chess actually works really well as a game played over a meal or a drink with a mate. I’ve got a little portable set in the car that regularly gets pulled out during lunch at a local cafe, and in fact ended up being the deciding factor against a bakery where we used to meet up. Despite getting regular business from us, one day one of their staff decided to go on a little power trip and told us we couldn’t play. We never went back. The cafe we now visit instead is more than pleased to see the board come out. We eat, we drink, time permitting we go back for another match, we eat and drink some more.

This is also the year in which videogamers have opened a successful venue in Brisbane, The Mana Bar, which matches cocktails with consoles and is by all accounts doing rather good business. In fact, it’s looking to expand to Melbourne and Sydney very soon. So I wouldn’t be too quick to pooh-pooh the idea of catering for a less traditional bar clientele.

As long as Chess Nuts is physically a pleasant place to be, and the food and drinks are good quality and reasonably priced, I reckon they should do very well. I think the theme will be more of a plus than you might at first suspect.

6 responses to “A chess bar? Not as crazy as it sounds

  1. Pingback: A chess bar? Not as crazy as it sounds | An Onymous Lefty | Chess IQ

  2. Sounds pleasant, I think it would definitely be popular. There is an anarchist group in the inner-west in Sydney who meet in old warehouses to play chess socially. My boyfriend would love this idea too, he is absolutely obsessed with Chess.

  3. Cafe Essen in Canberra has its own collection of chess sets for the use of patrons, which can quite often be seen in use as you walk past.

  4. Wisdom Like Silence

    It’ll turn into pool hall “Aren’t you done yet?” kind of thing. Except instead of skin-heads and pool sharks, it’ll be chess-hustling snooty people, sniffing and coughing when you make the wrong move to get you off the table.

    Sounds like great fun.

  5. Hey there,
    We’re looking forward to the chess nights commencing! You can keep up with us at our Facebook Page: http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Brunswick/Chessnuts/143414365679767?ref=ts

    A blog will commence soon!

    Happy chessing!

    Jaz and Rich.

  6. Hi again – thought I’d post to let you know the blog is now up and running!

    Happy chessing,

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