Does the theme sound familiar? It might. Run by one of the bartenders from the much-missed MiG Bar, Dr. Clock's is one of the most unlikely comebacks in recent memory.
Van Hillard and Chad McCall created the low-key MiG Bar in this same space back in 2011, offering canned beer, strong cocktails and good DJs while showing old-school movies on a projection screen. The bar abruptly closed in April 2012 after a falling-out with the landlord, but the duo promised they'd open their own neighborhood bar eventually.
A few months ago, Hillard got a call from the building's owner, asking whether he wanted to run a new bar in the same space, and he jumped at the chance. (McCall, who says he still plans to open a new version of MiG Bar with Hillard in the future, now bar-tends at the Iron Horse Tap Room.)
Hillard says he's not changing the format much at Dr. Clock's. The decor is slightly different – the retro Soviet-inspired paintings on the wall have been replaced by illustrations that mix "Star Wars" characters and cheap domestic beer. "PBR2-D2" and "Natty BohBa Fett" are already there; if you can come up with a better hybrid than "CP3O'Doul's," Hillard is looking for suggestions.
DJs provide the soundtrack from 10 p.m. to close Thursday through Saturday, with Hillard's Britpop-heavy iPod running the rest of the week. Some cocktails are good – the Dark and Stormy uses Kraken rum and spicy Fentimans ginger beer. But the house specialty Snakeskin Jacket sounds a bit scary: Fireball whiskey, Kubler absinthe, ginger ale and orange juice. It's named after Nick Cage's jacket in "Wild at Heart," and it sure sounds like something Sailor would drink, especially for $8.
Unlike MiG Bar, Dr. Clock's Nowhere Bar takes credit cards, but be warned: A sign behind the bar promises that tabs left open at the end of the night "are subject to a 1,000,000,000% gratuity."
The place opens at 6 p.m. nightly, but I have a feeling I'll be heading there most often when I need a refuge from the usual Adams Morgan scene.