319 Jackson St
Olin, IA 52320

Phone
319-484-2183
Manager
Deana Schnepp
Hours
Monday: CLOSED
Tuesday: 3:00 PM - 10:00 PM
Wednesday: 11:00 AM - 10:00 PM
Thursday: 11:00 AM - 10:00 PM
Friday: 11:00 AM - 2:00 AM
Saturday: 11:00 AM - 2:00 AM
Sunday: 11:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Location Image

A Biker Bar With History

Image of a member of the Red Knights with Sally the Monkey from Hammer's Hideaway, Olin

I can honestly say that I have never heard of Hammer’s Hideaway before today.  Even though I might have heard the town of Olin mentioned somewhere, I had never been there or even considered going there.  Well, tonight was bike night, and I got invited by some friends.

This little bar apparently has a lot of history, and at least one of the current owners is a descendant of the original owners.  From what I can gather, the bar has changed owners and changed names a few times over the years.  It’s a very laid-back bar in a very small town, and most of the locals have some kind of story to tell about the place.

Photo of the outside of Hammer's Hideaway in Olin, Iowa

The thing that seems to generate the most stories is the large monkey bolted to the concrete in front of the bar.  Among other things, the monkey is the focal point of quite a few photo opportunities over the past couple of decades.

The monkey(s) of Hammer's Hideaway

The current monkey is actually the second monkey to guard the entrance of Hammer’s Hideaway.  The first monkey was somehow tipped over and damaged.  From what I was told, this resulted in monkey number one getting moved to another location and being painted green.

The owners of the bar at that time learned a valuable lesson about monkeys getting tipped over, so monkey number two was firmly bolted to the concrete upon installation.  This allows for even better photo opportunities, since it is now possible for a full-grown man to climb on top of monkey number two without tipping it over.  The bar owner suggested that Keith Paulson (RKMC president) should sit on top of the monkey to demonstrate this, so be sure to watch the video of that process in action. You can watch the video above yourself to see what happened. It's at the end of the video.

Although the original monkey was damaged and moved to a new home, neither monkey has ever been stolen.  The bar owners are proud to hold the record in town for the longest amount of time a large concrete monkey has been able to sit outside of a bar without being stolen.

From what I was told, most locals have some kind of story with the monkey.  At the very minimum, there is widespread familiarity with the monkey.  One long time resident who was there told me that everybody in Jones county has at least heard about this monkey.

Feed the turtle, win a beer

Image of the inside of Hammer's Hideaway, Olin, Iowa

Another fixture in the bar is the turtle (also featured in the video).  Right above one of the coolers, there is what appears to be a snapping turtle.  However, I do not claim to be a turtle expert and cannot provide positive confirmation of the species.  Long-time tradition dictates that if you can toss a quarter into the turtle’s mouth, you will receive a free beer.  I asked the owner to demonstrate this process, but she did not seem very confident in her ability to toss quarters with the necessary degree of accuracy.

A bar with real history

During what I assume was some kind of remodel, the current owners found the original bar back in the building next door.  That building is now part of the business, and can be used for large parties or live band performances.  The bar back that was found is now mounted on the wall inside the main bar area.  There are pictures of some of the original bar owners framed on this bar back, and the people in those pictures are the ancestors of the current owners.

Yes, Hammer's has food...

If you are still hungry after experiencing all the entertainment that you might find at Hammer’s, they have plenty of food available to fix that problem. 

"The Frisco" & Hammer's Double Cheese

Image of The Frisco Burger at Hammer's Hideaway, Olin, Iowa

I got what they call the Frisco, a double cheeseburger, and a plate of cod nuggets to show off some of the food they have to offer.  The Frisco appears to be similar to a patty melt, and the double cheeseburger was just huge. 

Close up image of the Cheeseburger sold at Hammer's Hideaway in Olin, Iowa

The meat didn’t look like it was any kind of frozen hamburger patty, so I confirmed with the owner that they get their meat fresh from a local Fareway. 

More than just burgers- cod nuggets and tenerloins too

Image of the Cod Nuggets sold at Hammer's Hideaway, Olin, Ia

The cod nuggets are a big seller here, and they do have tenderloins available as well.

Find the Hideaway on Facebook here


A note from Will Carter, The Ambassador of Flavors:

“This is one of many biker bar motorcycle-friendly restaurant reviews I do on a weekly basis.  The goal is to promote local bars as destinations for motorcycle enthusiasts.  These reviews are part of an online resource created to help bikers find bars with good food and entertainment.”

More Reviews


Map:

Get directions