I t’s one of the best bars in Massachusetts, but the thing is, from the day it opened in 1933 until just recently, you never knew it was a bar if you were just walking by. The Belmont Club at 34 Franklin St. in Fall River looks like a nice old house, actually used to be somebody’s nice old house, and there was never a sign outside or neon in the window or anything to indicate that you could walk in and get a drink.
The only way you’d have known would be if people had told you. So it stood to reason that you knew people in there, or at least knew people who knew people in there. How else would you know to stop on that quiet side street? It worked the other way, too: Once you were inside, everybody just assumed you belonged. How could you possibly be a stranger? Strangers wouldn’t just walk into some random house.