The history of the No Name Pub takes us far back to 1931 when they were a general store and bait and tackle shop. They remained that way until 1936 when the owners added a small room on to the main structure which became an eatery. Thus the Pub was born.
Their early customers included people from all walks of life, world travelers that arrived from the mainland via Ferry to the local Fisherman. The late 1930s brought an interesting twist to the No Name Pub’s history. In an effort to increase business the upstairs storage room was converted into a Brothel. Unfortunately, the venture failed after several years as the Fisherman were reported to be better looking than the ladies.
It was during the 1950s that the general store and bait and tackle shop closed. The Pub was now 100% bar and restaurant. No Name was added to the already Pub name and they became forever more the No Name Pub. It quickly became a Keys hangout. The honky tonk atmosphere of beer drinking, pool shooting and great food eating became known from Miami To Key West. The place would get so smokey and crowded that customers would spill out into the backyard where dice, crap and card games would eventually break out. The old timers say the place never got raided because the Sheriff ran the dice games.
1960 brought about another important addition to the Pub. It was during this era that their famous pizza was born. Two great cooks from Italy brought their recipe with them when they worked there. For over 40 years they still use the same great recipe. They have to. When the cooks left, they wrote the recipe on the kitchen wall so that they would never forget.
The 1970’s and 80’s was the rowdy time of their history. Jimmy Buffett’s “Why don’t we get drunk and screw” would play on the juke box while people would drink, eat and dance to excess. There was a lot of illegal money passing through the Keys back then and everyone loved to spend it. They had so much money in fact they started hanging it on their walls.
As the new millennium arrived the rowdies grew up and the No Name Pub became a place once again where people from all walks of life could enjoy great food, cold beer and good conversation. The jukebox is still there, the walls are covered with a few more dollars and they are one of the last great places with that old Florida Keys atmosphere. “A nice place if you can find it.”
There is no better way to smooth out that after noon buzz than a dip in the ocean. I was scanning the water with my camera lens and noticed my friends face. He looked like he was drowning! Luckily, he was just rocking out to some Guns & Roses blasting on the radio.