“We went ahead and bought a 10-foot projector,” he says. “We’re not fully set up long-term as a sports bar, but it seemed like a good time” to have a giant screen on hand in the otherwise TV-free bar.
On Tuesday night, when the Astros and the Washington Nationals take to the field at Minute Maid Park, the screen will be set up on one wall, and Svetlik hopes his compact Truxton Circle bar will be filled with Astros fans eating chile con queso and sipping a combo named after star second baseman José Altuve: A pony bottle of Miller High Life and a one-ounce pop of Santa Teresa rum for $9. (The small size of the drinks is a nod to the 5-foot-6 Altuve’s diminutive stature, while Santa Teresa, like Altuve, comes from Venezuela.)
The only hitch: All World Series games start after 8 p.m. Because of Republic Cantina’s liquor license, the bar can’t serve alcohol after 11 p.m. Sunday through Thursday, or after midnight on Friday and Saturday, “but we’ll stay open until the game is over,” Svetlik says, with last call 15 minutes before the cutoff. (Think of it this way: You’ll probably still be able to get a drink later than the fans in the stands.) Another reason to get there early: Happy hour, which runs from 5 to 7 p.m., includes $5 chile con queso, $5 Modelo beers and a choice of $8 margaritas.
And Svetlik’s prediction for this week? “Astros all the way,” he says. “I’ll call it in five [games].”