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Manuel’s Tavern: Where Atlanta’s Political Junkies Go for a Pint

Beer and GOP debates at Manuel's, 8:30 p.m. on a Wednesday.

Welcome to the photo series Eater Scenes, in which photographers visit some of the world's great restaurants to capture them at a certain, and very specific, point in the day. Today, photographer Jonathan Phillips visits Manuel's Tavern, an Atlanta landmark.

Since in 1956, Manuel's Tavern in Atlanta has served as a watering hole for the politicians, journalists, and political junkies thirsting for a pint. The bar's original proprietor Manuel Maloof was an unlikely folk hero in the Atlanta political scene, successfully organizing a protest to prevent an increase of the Atlanta bar licensing fee in 1965. He eventually went on to hold local elected office. Maloof's enthusiasm for government theater left its mark on the bar. Today, Manuel's wood-paneled walls are decked out with campaign bumper stickers, presidential portraits (John F. Kennedy takes center stage behind the bar), and a multitude of neon beer signs.

With the 2016 campaign cycle in full-swing, the tavern continues to draw crowds for election coverage. Televisions were tuned to the Republican debate on Wednesday evening when Eater photographer Jonathan Phillips dropped in. The bar was accordingly packed with patrons, their eyes glued to the screens. Check out the scene in the gallery above.

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