Hogs & Heifers Saloon: A Look Back

By Sasha Johnson*

It’s Wednesday night, October 10th at Hogs & Heifers Saloon in Las Vegas, which can only mean one thing: It’s time to party! The minute you step on to the corner of Ogden and Third Street, you become completely immersed in what the real Vegas used to be. There’s a Rally in the Alley starting tonight, and they’re not stopping until the wheels fall off. . . Or until Sunday, whichever comes first.

For the past thirteen years, H&H has been a staple watering hole in Las Vegas, but its history pre-dates its 2005 opening as part of the Las Vegas downtown revitalization project. The original Hogs & Heifers Saloon made its debut in New York during one of the coldest winters on record for the east coast. Black Friday, 1992 marked the grand opening for the now infamous bar. However, it wasn’t always the hottest spot to be. The original bar in the Big Apple had no heating which prompted its first hired bartender to get up on the bar and dance to generate her own warmth.

When Allan Dell decided to open a self-proclaimed dive bar, a young woman named Michelle walked into the  building sporting cowboy boots and a cropped denim jacket. The bar was still under construction at the time, and she was hired on the spot by Allen himself. It was love at first sight as Michelle explains it.. About six months later they were engaged, and on November 16, 1993, Allan and Michelle eloped in Reno, Nevada on a cliffside that overlooked Lake Tahoe.

Michelle Dell might not have known it back then, but in retrospect, she really created a movement of feminine sexual empowerment. Her work ethic and dedication are by no means lost on any of the women currently operating at the Vegas location today. Michelle’s signature black leather halter tops and cowboy boots are easy to spot. All of the lovely ladies behind and on top of the bar pay homage to her early nineties look.

To say that the bartenders are merely slinging drinks would be an insult. The women here are some of the most talented, hardworking people you have ever seen. They’re mixing drinks, taking orders, dancing their hearts out on the bar, all while catcalling patrons by way of a bullhorn as they pass by. There’s no getting past these ladies without a drink in your hand.

A full-service rectangular bar was erected right in the middle of Third Street for Hogs & Heifers’ Rally in the Alley. The bar is very well-known for its consistent support of the biker community. One of the original ideas for the logo actually had a motorcycle integrated into the artwork. So, it seems very fitting to start off the weekend’s festivities here where you can get an ice-cold beer in the blink of an eye, or the shake of a blue-jean-clad hip, and where bikes are always welcome.

Later in the week the whole Quick Throttle crew, plus our special guest Rock ‘N Roli Szabo, seen on Counting Cars, gathered here Saturday evening for Quick Throttle’s Meet & Greet.  It was a great time all around. Fremont Street was packed to the brim with bikers and merch booths catered to motorcyclists and bike enthusiasts. People were thrilled to see Roli and have the rare chance to talk shop with him.

*With additional info courtesy of www.hogsandheiferslasvegas.com