Club XYZ is the hottest gay bar in Knoxville.
When I visited the club last Saturday, the venue was dealing with a busted air-conditioner, which made things a little muggy but ultimately didn’t detract from a night of down-home decadence.
As you enter the club, the dance floor awaits to the left. A disco ball and impressive light display help the area feel much larger than it is. This is also where the evening’s female impersonators strut their skills.
Ample seating near the dance floor and along the wall is available as you head toward the bar, which faces the stage and continues toward the back of the club. The bartenders, who became increasingly slammed as the club filled up, remained friendly and attentive throughout the night. (And it didn’t hurt that they seemed to have a heavy hand with the pour on my Jager shots.)
Club XYZ offers some alluring drink specials, including two for one well drinks and $1.75 domestic longnecks (Sundays-Friday ’til 9 p.m.). Also, there’s no cover at the club Sundays-Thursdays. The cover charge for Friday and Saturday nights is $4.
Heading toward the back, a lone pool table stands, and didn’t get much use during my Saturday visit. Also toward the back is a great patio with a fully stocked bar and lots of room to catch your breath when the club gets packed (although this is also where many smokers congregate, so “fresh air” is sometimes at a minimum).
The best part of my Saturday visit to Club XYZ was the drag show. There were two performances (11 p.m. and 1 a.m.) with six impersonators singing two songs each. These girls take their jobs seriously, and deliver high-quality entertainment (and awesome outfits). But lest things get too high-class, “K-town Clown” the Outrageous Raz keeps it all in check with bawdy humor and self-deprecating laughs.
Tons of TVs throughout the venue project the drag show to all parts of the club (including the outside patio), which is a plus when the place gets too crowded to head to the front. (Between drag shows, videos of hot club hits are shown.)
My only beef with the broken A/C wasn’t the heat itself (if you’re gonna dance, you’re gonna sweat, right?), but the fact that my beer was hot after just five or 10 minutes. I like cheap beer, but cheap, HOT beer? Oh, hell, no.
Despite that minor hiccup, Club XYZ really delivers the goods and I can’t wait to hit it again.
© 2011, Knoxville News Sentinel Co.
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