Fantastic live music, affordable drink specials and a relaxed, welcoming environment has always been a winning combination in the bar business. Perhaps no one subscribes to this ideal more than the guys behind Bougainvillea’s Old Florida Tavern — or, if you’re a regular, just plain “Bougie’s Bar.”
For the last 10 years, the beloved local watering hole has developed a reputation among night lifers and local musicians as the place to go in South Miami for top-notch local and touring bands playing both original and cover songs in an inexpensive and comfortable setting.
“We see ourselves not necessarily as a place that pours drinks for people but one that shows people a great experience every night,” says managing partner Cesar Rincon. “We’ve been involved in music since the day we opened our doors.”
Rincon, his partners Nicholas Lecat and Loic Delbat, and entertainment director Mike De La Torre try to keep things simple at Bougie’s.
There is never, ever a cover charge. Each month, De La Torre creates an event calendar to make it easier for customers to plan their visits and see their favorite bands play.
Every night has a theme, which extends not only to the event being held, but the drinks that are on special.
On “Play-ya Mondays,” Bougie’s hosts a game night where free pizza is served and customers can play board games and Nintendo classics while drinking $2 Bud Lights and $5 Jager shots. “Karaoke Tuesdays” offer $5 Pabst Blue Ribbon and Jager shot combos, called “Happy Meals.” Women drink free on “Ladies Night Wednesdays” while De La Torre spins records. “Reggae Thursdays” host live Reggae bands and offer $4 Red Stripes and $6 Flor de Cana drinks. Some of the best cover bands in town converge on Bougie’s on “House Party Fridays” and both local and nationally touring bands hit the stage on “Homegrown Saturdays.” Sundays serve as the bar’s “In the Biz” nights and reward members of Miami’s service industry with live entertainment and 50 percent off drinks.
“I love how it feels to bring in an awesome band and just see the crowd jamming to them and having a great time,” says De La Torre. “My main goal going forward is to remain consistent in doing that, honor our relationships with our regular bands and find even more great bands to showcase here at Bougie’s.”
Their dedication to keeping live music thriving has extended outside of their own walls. For the last four years, Bougie’s has been in charge of all the music on the live stage at Grovetoberfest, Coconut Grove’s annual Oktoberfest beer festival.
“It’s been great, because it gives us some exposure, brings us to another neighborhood close by and allows us to provide music for even more people who’ve never experienced it here in South Miami,” says Rincon.
Bougainvillea’s Old Florida Tavern is located at 7221 SW 58th Ave. They are proud members of the Chamber South and the Red Sunset Merchant Association. A sponsor of the South Miami Art Festival, they have fundraised for Camillus House and the American Breast Cancer Foundation.
For more information, call 305-669- 8577 or visit www.bougiesbar.com.