We went to Bar 46 so you don’t have to
Apparently it isn’t finished yet
There’s a good chance you’ve completely missed the fact that a new bar has opened in Aber. Perhaps you were vaguely aware that Bar 46 was going to be a thing, but had no idea that it had already opened.
The latest addition to Aber night life can be found between Rummers and the Black Lion, where the old RAFA club was.
The first thing that you notice when going into Bar 46 is the construction site vibe. The entire bar still feels a couple weeks away from completion, with footprints on the ceiling and a everything feeling a little unfurnished. Even the table tops aren’t secured on yet. There’s some weird fireplace looking thing that I can only assume will be somewhere for a DJ to go when the bar is actually finished, or a stage for bands.
Aside from the fact that it is still unfinished, Bar 46 has a rather weird atmosphere. There’s a lot of space and little room to sit down, making it seem like the bar wants you to dance. But the music being played seemed to just be Radio 1; it was hard to tell, as it was only just audible, and the bar was closed before 1am. Nobody dances before 1am.
Despite the layout seeming like it was designed around dancing, it was actually a fairly chilled out place. If you manage to grab one of the handful of seats, it’s one of the more relaxed places open in Aber.
The bar staff seemed super friendly and happy to be there, the two for £10 cocktails were impressive and worth going for if you like Libertines, but like most students, balk at the prices, and the other drinks were hardly expensive either.
However what chill vibe the place had was soured by the security, who were marching around dressed in all black, bar a red armband. This made it feel like we stepped into some sort of neo-fascist dystopia, where you could still have a drink, but under the watchful eye of Big Brother.
Ultimately the problem with Bar 46 at the moment is that it just does not feel like it belongs in Aberystwyth. Stepping inside is like being transported out of Aber, perhaps to somewhere like Portsmouth or a part of London that’s just starting to see some gentrification. Perhaps it just needs to find its feet, but opening mid-November doesn’t exactly leave the new bar much room for error.
A new bar in Aber is very exciting, and we’ll definitely be going back, if only to see what it’s like when it’s actually finished. Apparently the owners have been pursuing a late night license, and want to turn it into a live music venue, which would bump up Bar 46 from a forgettable hobby project of a bar into something great.
In any case, Bar 46 is looking a lot better than the ill-fated Wiff Waff did when it opened. If it can find its feet in time, it could become a real staple of the Aberystwyth night out, but until then you’re probably better off just walking another 20 paces and going to Rummers.