If drinking tequila in the presence of religious statues is considered blasphemous, ex-Shady Pines Saloon boys Jeremy Blackmore and Alex Dowd are committing some serious sacrilege with this homage to tequila and Mexican culture.
From the street, Tio’s looks more like a brothel than a tequila bar. A sleazy fluorescent light hums lazily in the front window, sending a beacon of green light across Foster Street.
Inside, Catholic shrines house saintly figures of the Virgin Mary, melted candles line the clay-washed walls and long strings of fairy lights burn a red hue over the darkened room. Behind the taco-stand-inspired bar, more than 100 varieties of tequila are mixed in with ceramic religious figurines.
Despite no official cocktail list, the skilled team of bartenders is quick to suggest a number of custom and classic cocktails (not limited to tequila). An additional quirk includes complimentary spicy popcorn served in brown-paper bags. Tio’s also offers beers from Europe, Australia and the USA.
The food offering seems to change every 12 months or so. For now, you can get Tio's Chicken Burger (fried chicken, corn chips, chipotle mayo, double cheese, pickled jalapeños and lettuce) delivered from Butter next door.