Don't get ahead of yourself — despite the name, this isn't a place to bring your wingtips in for a freshen-up. Instead, Hanson's Shoe Repair is a new bar in downtown that follows all the traditional speakeasy rules to great effect. It's hidden inside another establishment, you'll need a password — available by calling, texting, or hitting Facebook — to get in, and once inside there's no photography, no cell phone use, no smoking, appropriate attire required, gentlemanly behavior expected, and fine drinks being crafted. With friendly bartenders — tip: their names are written on a chalkboard each night, so greet them appropriately — a killer patio, and a classic, relaxed vibe, it's an ideal alternative to the chaos on Wall St. [Scouted by Nick]
Service industry types tend to like grabbing a beer after a long shift, and they also tend to know the best spots to do so. In Charleston, one of the go-tos is The Griffon. Located not far from Waterfront Park, this smallish, casual bar offers 15+ constantly rotating taps featuring a nice mix of local and not-so-local craft beers, and roughly the same number available by the bottle or can. The food is nothing fancy but is tastier than its bar-friendless might suggest, and between the TVs, occasional live band, and the walls — which are coated in literally thousands of personalized dollar bills — offer plenty to hold you attention for as long as you wish stick around.
Word has it that Picasso liked absinthe. He was also in Barcelona quite a lot. Seeing as how Bar Marsella is one of the only places in town that serves the green fairy — a situation that dates back to its opening in 1820 — it stands to reason he was a regular. Somewhat of an artists' haven, the bar was also a common haunt of Dalí and Hemingway, and judging by its looks, it hasn't changed a lot — if any — since they visited. Worn-out floors, paint peeling off the ceilings, cobwebs on the chandeliers, and a general coat of dust and grime covering anything simply add to the ambiance of this historical El Raval drinking spot, which is a must see for any aspiring writer, painter, or world-class drinker.
It might not be the newest bar in town, but it's still one of the best. Centaur is a prime downtown Motor City destination for great drinks and tasty bites. The menu is dominated by the extensive martini list, which includes everything from the straightforward Pear to the inventive Wasabi and Dirty Girl Scout. A number of equally-luxe small food plates are available, as is a solid selection of wines both by the glass and by the bottle. Top it all off with a daily happy hour that sees several martinis drop to just $5 each and a bottomless bloody mary bar and bottomless mimosas served up before Lions games, and you've got a can't miss stop.
Built in 1908, The Hotel Utah Saloon offers a lot of history — but odds are history won't be the reason you stop by. Instead, this SOMA landmark is known for its cold beers and drinks served across the mahogany bar, tasty burgers, sandwiches, and hummus, and for its stage. Yup, you read that right: the Utah plays host to independent live music seven nights a week — and sometimes during the weekend days — making it one of the best places to catch an impromptu show in a city that's filled with them. [Scouted by Rush]
Set inside the historic store Brent's Drugs — which has been turned into a diner/southern restaurant — The Apothecary at Brent's Drugs boasts one of the more interesting bar names we've run across. While it's affiliation with Brent's is obvious — they share the same owner and address — the Apothecary is very much it's own place, tucked behind a door and curtain, and boasts drinks created with help from the team at Cure New Orleans. With soda draft pumps in the bar and fresh, hand-squeezed juices in the drinks, it's the perfect place to get a low-key drink in Fondren. [Scouted by Tate]
Oh sure, Nano Brew Cleveland carries plenty of beers from small breweries. But the "nano" in its moniker comes from the on-site 1-barrel brewhouse that's used to produce extremely small batches of unique beers for the bar. In addition to these exclusive offerings, the brewpub offers 24 beers on tap, both an inside bar and an outdoor beer garden bar, and a food menu that includes fries, hummus, chili, salads, sandwiches, and some insane burgers.
The name sounds a little pretentious until you understand that the place nearly touches the atmosphere. Located on the 118th floor of the Ritz-Carlton Hong Kong, Ozone claims to be the highest bar in the world — and we're not ones to argue. The interior is geometric, modern, and flashy, while the menu includes a host of innovative cocktails and tasty Asian tapas. Stay safely indoors and enjoy the views while sipping on your drink, or venture onto the outdoor terrace for a truly stunning experience.
Treat yourself to some truly unique beers at The Foundry. This Westport establishment offers a few of its own house-made brews alongside a fantastic list of artisan beers both domestic and imported. 20+ taps join a large selection of bottles, cans, and even a few beer cocktails; food is also on offer, and leans toward the beer-friendly — think mini-corndog lollipops, skillet tots, fish tacos, pizza, sandwiches, sliders, and wings. A cool interior and one of the city's best patios round out the offerings, which make for a nice change of pace from your typical darkened beer den.
There are plenty of places that aren't afraid to be labeled as dive bars, and most of those even take pride in the distinction, but few take the title as seriously as Dive Bar. Located in the Corryville neighborhood, this dark, smallish bar hits all the dive bar high notes with varied seating, including barrels upstairs, a surprisingly robust beer menu that runs from watery domestics to complex crafts, strong, cheap drinks, and a food window serving up booze-friendly food like hot dogs, sandwiches, and chili. Ideal for a low-key night out, or for drinks before or after catching a show at nearby Bogart's.
We've seen a lot of different spots call themselves a "sky" bar, but few deserve the moniker more than the Sky Bar Bangkok. Suspended in the sky on the 63rd floor of the Dome at lebua, this upscale cocktail bar claims to be the world's highest open-air bar, and offers fantastic views of the city and the Chao Phraya River. The drinks are also fantastic, and combined with a dress code that calls for smart casual attire and outlaws shorts, sandals, and sport uniforms, this is about as far removed as you can get from the debauched streets depicted in The Hangover.
Yes, it is a bar, and yes, they do serve wine — but the Corner Wine Bar is more than just a place to satiate your thirst for fermented grapes. Located in the Broad Ripple neighborhood, this local favorite offers a casual environment that's great for grabbing a drink — or several — or for sitting down to dinner with its bistro-style menu that includes soups, salads, appetizers, sandwiches, pasta, and entrees like ratatouille and steak frites. Oh, and don't forget the wine — with over 150 to choose from, you should be able to find something you like, and if you don't they offer a decent selection of beers, as well. [Scouted by Lori]