Sara Havens, aka The Bar Belle

Sara Havens, aka The Bar Belle

I decided to randomly pick a page in Sara Havens’ new book, “The Bar Belle, Volume 2.” I figured, what better way to catch the Bar Belle in a moment?

So I stuck my thumb against the pages, thrust it inward, and came up with page 99. This was the first thing I read: “When hungover, it’s best to avoid: roller coasters, planetariums, bungee jumping, a serious talk with a friend, serious talk, grocery shopping, action films, the sun, swings, calling your parents, children, calling your parents children, heavy lifting, malls, cleaning, exercising, creativity, rehashing last night, regret, apologizing, figs, cigs, road trips, and Republicans.”

A straight sequel to her first book and a continued collection of her Bar Belle columns, Havens’ second release spans yet another space in time (2011-2014) filled with drunken shenanigans, cool drinks, bars old and new, celebrity interviews (both real and imagined), and humor aplenty.

She also included a few appropriate quotes from the likes of Rodney Dangerfield, Tina Fey and David Sedaris for starters, and the real reading kicks off with a foreword by none other than Woodford Reserve master distiller Chris Morris (also appropriate).

FrontThe first entry in the book, dated Jan. 12, 2011, reads thusly: “Tattered and torn, weak and worn, I stumbled into the Holy Grale on a cold January Saturday night, and I was saved.” It set the stage for what is essentially a culturally historical look back over the last three or so years of Louisville nightlife and spirits, and the comings and goings of establishments and the players behind them.

Havens’ honest, conversational style keeps the reader moving along, and the path is dotted with humor, warmth and fun.

One of Havens’ gigs at her position with Insider Louisville is a recurring “7 Questions With …” feature. It seemed appropriate to celebrate the release of her second book by turning the tables on her. (And see below for all the places you’ll be able to catch the Bar Belle for a book and an autograph.)

What’s the most surprising thing on your Bucket List?

To one day prove my worth to Mayor Greg Fischer enough to get a key to the city.

What famous cartoon character do people say resemble you most?

Before bourbon: A cute little My Little Pony frolicking around chasing rainbows. After bourbon: The Tasmanian Devil at a Dale Chihuly exhibit.

With whom would you most like to be stuck with in a bubble bath?

I’ll choose the safe route and appease the LIBA folks by keeping it local — Jennifer Lawrence.

If you weren’t a writer, what would you be doing for a living?

I’d probably own my own bar called either Hop Haven or Bungholes & Dreams.

If you could only have one type of alcohol for the rest of your life (beer, wine, bourbon, etc.), which one would it be and why?

Is this the Barbara Walters question where you try to make me cry? Hmm, I’d have to go with bourbon, because it’s perfect for just about any occasion — tailgating, happy hour, breakfast.

If you and your liver could have dinner together, what would you talk about?

I think we’d need a mediator, and I’m sure a large portion of our discussion would involve my 20s. I have a lot of explaining to do, but I don’t think forgiveness is out of the question.

If you got requests to go out for happy hour with both Tiffany and Debbie Gibson on the same night, which one would you stand up and which one would you go out with?

Can’t we all go together? OK, fine. If it was 25 years ago, Debbie Gibson no question. If it’s tomorrow, then Miley Cyrus.

Bar Belle book signing events:

  • Thursday, Aug. 27: Carmichael’s Bookstore (2720 Frankfort Ave.), 7-8 p.m.
  • Wednesday, Sept. 9: The Back Door (1250 Bardstown Road), 6-8 p.m.
  • Sunday, Sept. 13: Big Bar (1202 Bardstown Road), 2-5 p.m.
  • Thursday, Sept. 17: The Planet (1565 Bardstown Road), 7-9 p.m.
  • Friday, Sept. 18: Apocalypse Brew Works (1612 Mellwood Ave.), 6-9 p.m.
  • Friday, Sept. 25: The Wine Rack (2632 Frankfort Ave.), 6 p.m.
  • Saturday, Sept. 26: NuLu Fest, 11 a.m.-3 p.m.
  • Friday, Oct. 2: Regalo Gifts (562 S. Fourth St.), 6 p.m.

“The Bar Belle, Vol. 2” is also available at, Amazon, Carmichael’s Bookstores, Liquor Barn, Regalo Gifts, and CRAFT(s) Gallery.