ReGrow Dining Spotlight

617 Bar
Mary Montpetit, Owner

“If these walls could talk”, says Mary Montpetit, owner of the 617 Bar. “The 6”, as locals refer to the quaint and comfortable bar on 4th St., opened in 1934, the bar has had only three owners is all those years. The address was changed to 2185 4th St. back in the early 80’s, but the name has remained the same. Mary worked for the bar in several capacities since 1973, until she purchased the business in 2003. 

“We’re a local, welcoming space for the community to gather”, says Mary. Their Bloody Marys’ and Chocolate Martinis are signature items and Mary has seen a resurgence of the classics recently, like Manhattan’s and Old Fashioned. The bar serves pizzas and is open seven days a week. 

A lot of local history has taken place and much lore has been created over the years in the iconic bar. Many celebrities and colorful figures have been seen here over the years, such as: Bruce Willis, Bonnie Raitt, Henry Bouche, Will Sumner and more. Many outstanding musicians have sat in at some of the impromptu jam sessions held in the bar over the years. The local favorite “617 House Band” originated here, performing on Sunday nights for many years. The staff are like family. Bartender Mary Markoe worked behind the bar well into her 90’s before COVID prompted her to retire, a reminder of the unfortunate reality of the pandemic. 

Mary and her staff take the safety of their customers very seriously and have worked hard to establish the necessary safety protocols to ensure that safety. They have also taken the Regrow WBL Dining Pledge. Mary is so grateful for the support of their “regulars” and the community. She is also grateful for the many new people and friends she has made over the years. 

This article written by Ken Galloway, and originally featured in the White Bear Press.