The Continental Club
I had seen pictures in magazines. I think it was The Rodder’s Journal that did a photo shoot out front featuring Steve Wertheimer’s Cad and a few Jimmie Vaughan customs. It was the first time that I had a notion of the Texas car scene… I fell in love with the Continental Club immediately.
The next year, I flew down to Austin for the first annual Lone Star Roundup. Tardel and I thought it would be a fun little retreat and an escape from the huge car shows we had both been attending. After checking into my favorite hotel in the entire world, we crossed the relatively empty street and strolled into the Continental Club. A small three-piece country band was on stage that matched our mexican beer perfectly. It was just one of those rare moments in life when you are absolutely content.
Red velvet. Black and white. Honky Tonk. Rock and Roll. Texas.
After downing a few, we noticed the traffic in the joint had increased quite a bit and stepped outside to gauge the scene. In a matter of seconds, our senses were overwhelmed by cars like the Black Dahlia, Jimmie’s Chevy, The Continental Kid, roadsters, coupes, etc… Only in a movie could a scene be staged so perfectly. I think it was at that moment that I realized what the Continental Club was – a mecca of sorts…
Of course, now I live in Austin and the owner of the club (El Jefe/Steve W.) is a close family friend. I drive by on my way to work almost every morning and I still get that same warm feeling inside. In all honesty, it’s that very feeling that made Marcie and I move back to Texas in the first place. The Continental Club is more than a bar although they serve a damn good drink. It’s more than a hot rodder’s hang out although it’s not uncommon to run into hot rodding legends there on any given night. It’s a mecca for the Texas Hot Rod lifestyle – laid back, humble, unintentionally cool, and just plain right.
If you ain’t been there, I’m not sure I can explain what your missing.