The Foo Fighters in town, where to happy hour on a boat all summer long, and an incredible Vincent Van Gogh exhibit take your Thursday to the next level!
Cuddle up for a theater date night and then head to Brooklyn to get your tacos and margs on!
As the owner of The Queen Anne Urban Bed and Breakfast with a background in both hospitality and sustainability, Milan Doshi has gone to great—make that green—lengths to make this pair of nineteenth-century Victorian houses a home for his guests.
Dotted with log fireplaces, bay windows, exquisite antiques, and even a turret as well as recycled materials galore, Doshi’s twinned inn also features woodworks, murals, and amenities courtesy of equally eco-minded area artisans—from your bath products to your morning coffee.
So before your very eyes, the historic turns progressive, the old-fashioned turns new wave—and you become an honorary local, whether over breakfast in the garden or during a happy hour that features Colorado wine and cheese.
Ocean Prime is the culmination of a creative exercise we started in 2006 to define the best in culinary, beverage, service and atmosphere. Their team wanted to pair a great steakhouse with a great seafood restaurant. We imagined a place where our guests are greeted by name and partner with us in adventures of great food, wine and libation.
Ocean Prime was not developed overnight. Their executive chef teams traveled, tasted and compared notes to refine a menu that would ignite curiosity and surpass expectations. Their operations teams sourced the finest and the freshest ingredients to elevate every plate that leaves our kitchen. They curated a Wine Spectator-honored wine list for perfect pairings. And they poured energy with a fresh twist into the creation of our signature cocktails, expertly prepared by our well-trained bar chefs.
Grapevine Bar is an interesting little entity with all kinds of things to keep you busy while you overindulge. It’s located right off Oak Lawn and has a rooftop deck with great views of the city. They also have a large patio with a basketball court and ping pong tables and TV’s, pool and Sony Playstations inside. Located right off Oak Lawn, but not necessarily a GLBT establishment, Grapevine is the kind of place with such diverse patronage that no one is out of place. They also have happy hour every day (even Saturday) that’s all day long Sunday through Tuesday.
The Dutch at the W Hotel on South Beach is turning the chic, boutique hotel on its head offering an unpretentious menu and equally casual atmosphere. It’s easy to relax in the lovely, bright restaurant where the kitchen is expertly run by renowned New York chef Andrew Carmellini.
Of course, housed within a hotel, which is unusual unto itself given that most hotel restaurants really aren’t of such a high quality, they serve breakfast, lunch and dinner. Hazelnut crusted French toast amd crab cake benedict with asparagus and a kicky chipotle hollandaise elevate the breakfast standards while entrees like short rib ravioli, roast mushroom and taleggio fonduta and pappardelle, lamb ragu, sheep’s milk ricotta and milk are great for lunch and hefty enough they could be on their supper menu. Short ribs and sea scallops make a second appearance on that menu but are dressed up differently.
The Dutch is in the W Hotel, located at 2201 Collins Ave., Miami Beach, 305-938-3111, www.thedutchmiami.com
The small, mom and pop eatery in Downtown Miami is slowly disappearing, replaced by modern, hip restaurants and leading the trend is Cvi.che 105.
Chef/owner Juan Chipoco and sous chef and co-owner Luis Hoyos have created an incredible ambiance and menu that is indicative of their passion for traditional, delicious Peruvian cooking. The space is deceivingly large and inviting, with a bright interior, open kitchen and ultra-contemporary furnishings and accents.
Chipoco blends sexy dishes like seafood orgy ceviche, a blend of marinated raw seafood including fish, calamari and shrimp served in typical Peruvian tiger milk with more traditional ones like Mama Ele Corvina Fish – his grandmother’s recipe of pan roasted fresh corvine fish served with a crab cake in a rocoto sauce and a homemade potato cake
They also take great care in developing specific flavors for each ceviche depending which region of Peru it represents.
Cviche 105 is located at 105 NE 3 Ave., Miami, FL 305-577-3454, www.ceviche105.com
Hidden next to RA Sushi, across the street from the Loews Hotel, Piola is truly one of Atlanta’s best kept secrets. Part of a worldwide chain originating in Italy in 1986, Piola has a laid-back, fun, international vibe. Cozy and colorful, Piola is great for unwinding alone, with friends or with a special someone. The warm and inviting atmosphere just takes the edge off the day.
Grab a seat at the bar and make a request for the fabulous Coconut Mojito, which is not necessarily on the menu. A must try is also the Sgroppino Al Limone, or simply lemon ice cream (well gelato) and vodka; it’s a signature drink for a reason. Happy hour is from 5pm-8pm and there are always some free appetizers to sample.
Venture past the bar for more extensive dining. Pizza- thin, brick oven style – really is the thing and the Margherita is always a winner, but it’s far from the only pizza option. Piola has Featured Piola “Pizze,” like the Rio de Janeiro with chicken, catupiry cheese, parsley, tomato sauce and mozzarella; Classic Pizze, like the Margherita; and Le Pizze Bianche, or White Pizza, which is are the classic pizzas without tomato sauce. Piola is also known for its gnocchi and hosts monthly, all-you-can-eat “Gnocchi Day.” And, for dessert, you can’t go wrong with a classic tiramisu.
When it comes to having a laid-back good time, Piola truly knows what makes the world go round.
One of Downtown Miami’s hottest hotels is surprisingly enough, a fabulous nightclub spot. The Fifty Ultra Lounge at Viceroy Miami is stiff competition for those clubs on the other side of the Causeway (meaning South Beach).
Appropriately named for its location, the view alone is unmatched by any other club because it sits on the building’s rooftop meaning unobstructed water and skyline views as far as the eye can see. The pool, which serves as the centerpiece here, is no slouch either, adding that perfect Miami touch.
FIFTY promises to bring you a “One-of-a-kind rooftop lounge with a fresh new look on Miami’s Nightlife scene.” There’s always something happening on this rooftop with Happy Hour, guest DJ’s, special Ladies’ Night events and Sunday afternoon pool parties. Celebrities are frequently spotted here so keep your eyes peeled.
Viceroy Miami is located at 485 Brickell Avenue, 305-503-4417 www.viceroymiami.com
This popular neighborhood saloon since 1967 offers a sense of ease and genuineness for its loyal patrons. Unlike other restaurant chains, Chadwick’s allure lies in its ability to provide the same high quality food and sincere service ever since its opening.
For seven days a week, and on Tuesdays from 4pm till close, Chadwicks in Georgetown offers Happy Hour for beer, wine, margaritas, and even wings.These Happy Hour specials are favorites with professionals and students alike.
What’s not to like? Even on Saturdays and Sundays Chadwicks features a champagne breakfast of unlimited bubbly and massive burritos. Visit chadwicksrestaurants.com for more information.
Shhh… Dining customers can ask for discounted movie tickets to the Georgetown AMC Loews theatre next door that are only $7.50
Jaguar Ceviche Spoon Bar and Latam Grill is like a tour through Latin America and the cuisines that make each area unique. It’s what Chef Oscar del Rivero envisioned bringing to diners and he’s delivering.
Front and center is the ceviche spoon bar, a fantastic representation of unique bites representing Peru, where the dish is most popular, and some great variations. The Asian inspired ones have soy and ginger while many others include cilantro. All of course include the freshest fish and lime which is what makes the dish what it is.
The Latam (short for Latin American) grill features a grilled organic chicken chicken breast stuffed with goat cheese and pico de gallo verde, simple grilled fish entrees and steaks like filet mignon and skirt steak or “churrasco.”
The atmosphere complements the menu perfectly with warm-colored walls, unique bamboo styled lighting and dark wood chairs at the bar.
Jaguar is located at 3067 Grand Ave., Coconut Grove 305-444-0216 www.jaguarspot.com
It’s about more than just the food at Dolores but you can call me Lolita in the heart of Miami’s thriving Brickell area. This is a compound that encompasses the restaurant, lounge, private room and even the Japanese favorite Sushi Maki next door. They go for the warm glow of candlelight in the restaurant where the wall border close to the ceiling brims with quirky and inspiring sayings.
Then there’s the menu which is brimming with delicious selections like the appetizer called Maybe, the Best Serrano Ham Croquettes you ever tasted or the Caesar salad was created in Tijuana Parmesan cheese and croutons. Those wacky names doesn’t mean they don’t take food seriously here, entrees include pappardelle with a Kobe beef bolognese or baja fish tacos of tempura fish filets served with a chipotle-guava cabbage slaw.
Eat or party or do both at the restaurant or lounge, the atmosphere’s great at both.
With a non-descript look and a cool red sign The Democratic Republic of Beer, or as it’s better known and as its namesake sign states, DRB, is a small, intimate bar with a huge menu of brewskies and it’s the perfect haunt for insomniacs with a closing time of 5 a.m.
Sure, there’s a food menu here but serious beer aficionados aren’t coming here for the eats, it’s all about sampling a cold one, or a few perhaps after all, there are 500 beers here from more than 60 nations. Belgium, England, Germany and the U.S. lead the pack with huge selections (there are more than three dozen in each category). They do monthly beer tours here, focusing on a specific country and so far have included Russia, Ethiopia, Costa Rica and Thailand.
The Democratic Republic of Beer is located at 255 NE 14 St., Miami, FL
The make-up of Coconut Grove has changed over the years going from hippie, granola, birkenstock in the 60s and 70s to an area to cruise in your car and party the night away from the 80s into the present although the scene has quieted down a bit. One place though that’s stood the test of time and is still a great place to party is Monty’s in the Grove.
This waterfront party spot is always a great place to stop in for cocktails, maybe a nibble and definitely some dancing. The deejays here are always playing the latest hits and live bands play here regularly too. The bayview from the giant open-air tiki hut here is unbeatable, it’s Miami all the way. And the boats and yachts that call the dockside home are just as enticing.
Monty’s in the Grove is located at 2550 S. Bayshore Drive, Coconut Grove
A major stop on the The Beat Poetry Driving Tour, this well-worn bar on the ground floor of The Colburn Hotel was a favorite of Allen Ginsberg and Neal Cassady—and it remains dear to Denverites today. From the sing-alongs around the grand piano to Sunday night karaoke to summertime pig roasts on the patio, the goings-on are always convivial—and they’re only enhanced by the comfy leather seats and cheap drinks (which are even cheaper during the two-for-one happy hour). No wonder the crowds are so diverse—be it nattily dressed grandfolks humming to the oldies, families with toddlers, or lawnmower-beer-drinking hipsters, there’s something for everyone here.
Downtown Miami’s got a river running through it and bars are now lining the area making it a place to see and be seen with a killer view to boot. Finnegan’s on the River packs them in on any given night after all, it’s great for a mid-week happy hour, Friday night end-of-the-week outing and Saturday night hot spot.
In typical Miami fashion, Sunday is a huge day at Finnegan’s when boaters are invited to park and join in on the pool party. The drink specials alone (c’mon, $3 and $5 cocktails are unheard of around here) are incentive enough to party at Finnegan’s.
Happy Hour is Monday to Friday from 4 to 7 p.m. and on Saturdays it’s the perfect spot to watch a late afternoon college game and stay to party the night away.
Finnegan’s on the River is located at 401 SW 3 Avenue, Miami, FL
Coral Gables may be known for its restaurants, monthly Gallery Walk and upscale Mediterranean inspired architecture but it’s got a great nightlife too. For a quieter experience than South Beach or the Design District try the subdued, elegant Globe Cafe & Bar.
Great jazz artists hit the stage on Saturday nights, in this quaint spot to perform some top-rate, traditional and fusion Latin jazz. Legendary trumpet player Ira Sullivan has graced the stage as have trombonist John Fedchock, vocalist Valeria Proano, guitarist Jonathan Kreisberg and saxophonist Gary Campbell. And these are just a few of the rotating talents that make a night at the Globe Cafe a great night out for jazz lovers.
The Globe Cafe & Bar is located at 377 Alhambra Circle, Coral Gables, FL
One thing is for sure, visit a trendy hotel on South Beach and it’s very likely that they’ll use every inch of their space to provide multiple experiences for clubgoers and guests. The Shore Club is no exception where they utilize their interior and exterior space to the max, providing a nightclub experience among the palm trees as well as under the hot club lights.
The Redroom Garden surrounding the pool area is set up as an outdoor living room with Asian-style furniture and landscaped gardens filled with colorful perennials, bouganvilleas and passion flowers. It’s a true tropical oasis.
In keeping with the red theme, the interior Redroom is awash in the fiery color from the red lacquered teak floor, red walls that glow with intimate lighting and luxurious red bar stools. The comfy couches are filled with red-patterned cushions. No wonder local and national celebrities love to stop in and party here. Of course, a party on South Beach wouldn’t be complete without a DJ, they play here pretty much every night, Sunday afternoons there’s always a pool party.
SkyBar at the Shore Club is located at 1901 Collins Avenue, Miami Beach, FL
The concept at Sugarcane Raw Bar & Grill is to entice diners with a combination of flavors in a wide variety of small plates, known around Europe (particularly Spain) as “tapas.” They have robata, hot and raw bar kitchens.
Their eclectic menu is contstantly changing so it’s a unique and different experience everytime. Some of their most ambitious items include bacon wrapped dates with linguica and manchego, thin-crust flatbread with cured tuna, tobiko and sour cream and Kobe beef sliders with tonkatsu and quail egg. Their hand picked market greens with with crumbled goat cheese and cherry bing vinaigrette is a great starter, free range bulled barbecue chicken on brioche bread served with zucchini pickles and pommes frites (very fancy and tasty fries) is a great entree sandwich and the homemade el ray chocolate chip ice cream sandwich is a tasty dessert.
Inside, the place is colorful, industrial and edgy with a West Indies flair through their paddle fans, watercolor stained walls, a tall green hedge surrounding the outdoor patio and a killer bar with colorfully displayed wine bottles and alcohol.
Sugarcane Raw Bar & Grill is located at 3250 NE 1 Avenue, Miami, FL
The eye-popping, mouth-watering Sushi Samba Dromo takes fusion to a whole new level with an inspired threesome of Japanese, Brazilian and Peruvian tastes. You’ll feel like a world traveler in the hip, lounge-like dining area and bar. For the full global impact, be sure to sample the fusion drinks like Caipirinhas and specialty Sambatinis, Latin-inspired sushi a la the BoBo Brazil Roll with kobe beef and the amazing meats of the “Rio Grande” Churrasco (Brazilian Barbecue).
Sure, fun and politicians may not seem like they go together, but at Bullfeathers they do. Serving the House of Representatives and “friends” since 1980, Bullfeathers knows how to have a laugh. After all, it’s named after the phrase President Teddy Roosevelt used to deal with “frustrating situations” and to call out other people’s, well, bull…feathers.
Happy hour is always hot at the 40 foot bar and enjoy one of the best burgers in town with that beer. When the weather’s nice, make sure to take advantage of the patio and relax with the savvy Washingtonian crowd.
Established in 1946 and a staple of the Coral Gables community, hangin’ out at The Bar (once known as the Hofbrau Haus) is almost a rite of passage for folks who like to party in “The City Beautiful.” But don’t be fooled by the fancy surroundings because this place is no pretense and all good times. The brews are cold, the grub is great and there’s a jukebox that won’t quit, it’s legendary.
There’s something going on nightly here and they know how to start the week off right with 2 for 1 specials on Mondays. Karaoke’s on Tuesday, DJ’s Boe and Icue take over Wednesday through Friday and Saturday there’s live music.
And if all that’s not enough, they keep patrons happy by offering a “Hangover Brunch” on Saturdays and Sundays, after all they want to keep everyone coming back for more so what better way than to feed ’em.
The dark and heavy wood bar that commands Waxy O’Connor’s and is its centerpiece was placed at the heart of the bar and eatery to remind patrons they’re in an Irish pub and the 7,000-square-foot unit is authentic, it was built entirely in Ireland and shipped over to the United States.
The 20 brews and ales on tap and plenty more by the bottle are another dead giveaway that this is a place for drinking, eating, hanging with friends and especially catching just about any sporting event. They’ve got seventeen 50″ flat screen televisions so everyone can be watching their favorite sport or team at any given time.
Offering live music is another plus here. When the deejay’s not mixing up tunes, there’s someone playing it live at Waxy’s. The amazing view of Miami’s Downtown skyline and historic Miami River make for great waterfront drinking and gazing.
Waxy O’Connor’s is located at 690 SW 1st Court, Miami, FL
Luna Park is what you think of when you think of Los Angeles restaurants: relaxed, good food, and fun.
Whether its groups of friends huddling around a table or a business lunch, the overall attitude at Luna Park is both inviting and exciting. Though the menus are packed with typical California finds, most people come to Luna Park to drink or order dessert.
The dessert menu features fun, D-I-Y options such as making your own caramel apples or s’mores as well as deep fried apples and coconut cream pie.
The popularity of Luna Park also falls in their drink menu and cocktail selection. The Kick A** Mai Tai is definitely the most popular as well as the Luna Park Mini Bar featuring three flights of the restaurant’s signature drinks.
Since the drinks at Luna Park keep the tables and outdoor patio filled, Luna Park created happy hour weekdays from 4-7pm as well as bottomless mimosas and sangria on Saturdays and Sundays.
Beware though: Miracle Mile locals and those living adjacent to Melrose might ask you to find another park to eat at.
Distrito serves modern Mexican food in a fun and quirky environment – Pepto-Bismol pink walls and VW bugs as booths to be exact. Located in University City among three of Philadelphia’s major universities, Distrito is always packed with the young and young at heart that are ready to have a good time. And Chef Jose Garces (of Top Chef and Philadelphia restaurant fame) is ready all the time for the taco-loving crowds: Distrito is open for brunch on Saturdays and Sundays, lunch 5 days a week and dinner 7 nights a week.
The first floor bar and tequila lounge serves a fun cantina menu, full of all different types of tacos, enchiladas and especialidades, then when served alongside a house specialty margarita, you are good to go. For the heavier appetite or a night out with friends, it’s best to get a table and be prepared to share. All of the dishes are based on traditional Mexican ingredients but modernized – like the Fish Tacos with yellowtail, chipotle remoulade, avocado, red cabbage and lime juice, or the Skirt Steak Nachos with refried beans and queso mixto.
Tasting menus are also always available, with tequila pairings, which are not recommended for the faint of heart.
Miami’s Brickell Avenue area was once known as a residential area with not much nightlife but things have certainly changed. The thriving nightspots have been popping up everywhere over the last few years and Red Bar is one that attracts plenty of attention for its eye-grabbing wall art, local beautiful people and great mingling and dancing.
Located in the heart of the district, this place has everything a great night out on the town requires. Dance the night away to the sounds of either a live band or a smokin’ hot deejay, different ones are featured each month. They’ve also got Ladies Night where ladies get to drink for free every Wednesday from 8-12. And to add a little culture to the mix, there’s also a gallery with new artworks featured monthly, along with a meet the artist opening reception with drinks and hors d’oeuvres.
Red Bar is located at 52 SW 10 Street, Miami, FL
Though any Los Angeles Foodie will tell you that they adore any restaurant that is apart of the Patina Group, Nick & Stef’s may hold a special place for steak lovers and happy hour goers in L.A. Located Downtown, this steakhouse is the epitome of elegant dining with a splash of trendy followers and those who simply love a good drink deal.
The menu is stocked with amazing items but everyone is always raving about the dry-aged steaks that vary in cut and size. Though anything on the menu is order worthy, Nick & Stef’s offers diners programs and specials that other restaurants seem to forget. Weekdays at Nick & Stef’s means happy hours filled with $5 mixed drinks and mini bar bites. Along with their proclaimed happy hour, Nick & Stef’s offers lunch steals such as their $12 burger and other lunch favorites.
In a restaurant filled with dark wood tables and chairs with bright white ceilings, you might not expect such exciting things to happen at a steakhouse. With changing happy hours, lunch specials and other daily events, you might want to be on a first name basis with your good ole pals, Nick & Stef.
If there is one iconic restaurant in Chicago, it may just be Gibsons Steakhouse. This is Chicago at its best: mouth watering steaks, a bar that never runs dry and serves nothing but premium liquors and wines, celeb sightings to watch for and enough people watching to compete with your appetite.
Rounding off the “Viagra Triangle,” yes, the ‘hood really is called that because of the Ferrari driving white-haired men and their hot young things, Gibsons Steakhouse is the place to be. In case you don’t want to call its digs the V Triangle, it’s also known as the Gold Coast area where Rush Street and State Street become one. Gibsons Steakhouse is literally packed from Monday through Sunday, partly because of the financial district heads who dine there or the ladies who lunch (and linger until happy hour), but the place gets jumping early and ends late. If you want to snag a good table, you’ll want to head there at 4ish on a weekday!
As for the Johnny Depp connection? Gibsons Steakhouse was a favorite eating place for Depp when filming the mobster flick: Pubic Enemies. Johnny liked the place and its service so much, he left a $4,000 tip! So if it’s good enough for Johnny, you better believe you’re going to love Gibsons.
In any direction you go, you will find that all the fun is happening at East/West lounge. Thanks to its new renovations, including swanky furniture and a tequila room, it’s hard not to want to venture over any free chance you get.
Once awarded “Best Gay Bar in Los Angeles,” East/West keeps to its reputation, offering a lounge feel with club perks such as insane drink menus and table service. With drinks consisting of The Naughty Peach and Lemon Love, you will probably feel as though you belong in a sweaty Miami nightclub. Though East/West prides itself on not being that typical nightclub, the line to get in certainly reminds you that are you in L.A.- and if you want to get in, you’ve got to wait.
In the land of the overpriced, East/West actually throws customers a bone every so often by offering 2-for-1 drink specials and happy hours. Not only does this lounge provide cheap drink opportunities, they also dedicate certain nights to certain performers. If you check their weekly events section online, you are sure to find music video nights and spinning DJs.
Overall, East/West truly hits the nail on the head by taking the perks from a club and throwing them into a lounge. By creating a cool and comfortable setting with drinks you would find in a nightclub, East/West seems to be going in the right direction.
M BAR offers its guests the definitive Atlanta bar and lounge experience. From after work to after hours, the quintessential nightspot fuses the appeal of a high-energy bar and an ultra exclusive lounge. M BAR and FUSE LOUNGE are two boutique concepts sharing one intimate space.
If a more intimate high-end experience is what you’re seeking, FUSE LOUNGE serves as a VIP getaway and provides an exclusive setting with first class service.
Melding the character of the historic Castleberry Hill Arts District, M BAR dazzles even the most seasoned nightlife connoisseur. Its contemporary setting merge with signature cocktails, savory eats and Atlanta’s hottest DJ’s to create a sensational guest experience. M BAR sets itself apart from Atlanta’s traditional bars and lounges. Our VIP room, FUSE LOUNGE, is a boutique-sized getaway for intimate experiences and casual conversation. Featuring its own private bar and banquettes, guest can enjoy more discreet quaint interaction.
By now we’re sure you’re wondering what the “M” in “M BAR” stands for. It’s our signature blend of Music, Martinis, Margaritas, Mojitos and Mimosas. M BAR is well equipped to fulfill any entertainment, social or cultural craving you may have. In addition to our ambiance and cocktails, any of our signature dishes will satisfy your palette. Featuring American classics mixed with modern favorites, the restaurant caters to guests seeking a casual meal or a social dining experience. Guests boast about our famous turkey sliders, 100% lump crab cakes and our most beloved Grandma’s Apple dessert. Your trip would definitely be in vein if you don’t cap off the night with at least one of Atlanta’s most sought after cocktails: Beso del Dia White Sangria, Super Head, Monkey Love Martini, or Cinnamon Toast Crunch Rum Punch, just to name a few.
FUSE is the ultimate blend of intimate dining, cocktails and lounging. This boutique-style lounge, located in the rear of M BAR, is equipped to accommodate up to 80 people with 40 seated. FUSE was designed for the mature and crafted for the sexy. This space hosts a collage of design masterpieces; from our custom zebra wood walls to our walnut woodwork and floating granite bar. The feeling that radiates from this venue has been characterized as mature, romantic and mischievous, and customized for those teetering on the wild side. FUSE is the perfect venue for all occasions. Call to request a viewing with our events coordinator or join us for dinner and enjoy one or more of our delicious specialty cocktails. Ultimately, our impeccable service and attention to detail will undoubtedly make your experience a delicious memory, never to be forgotten.
Sometimes it’s chill, the calm enhanced by the woody, green-accented décor; sometimes it’s wild. But whether it’s catering to the after-work or the after-hours crowd, Mynt Mojito Lounge means business when it comes to play. From happy hour ($4 martinis from 4pm to 9pm!) until the wee hours, the bar whips up 12 different kinds of mojitos, from guava to ginger, many by the pitcher; at 10pm, bottle service begins—and so does the dancing, especially on weekends when DJs spin house and techno. If you need a bite to absorb the alcohol—and keep yourself on your toes—there’s a limited menu of small plates, appropriately Latin-themed.
Aja is where Kim Zolciak and Kandi Burrus had their joint b-day bash on the Real Housewives of Atlanta, but if highfalutin, pseudo-celebs isn’t your thing, Aja Restaurant and Bar is a hit with all trendy Atlanta diners.
Housed in the former Emeril’s location in Buckhead, its two story frame is adorned with red and black Asian-inspired décor and wall art, of which a 10-foot brass Buddha – straight from Thailand – sits in the middle of the dining room as the main attraction. In the sleek open space, the second floor overlooks the downstairs lounge area where guests can people-gaze from up top.
You can’t have a modern Asian kitchen without the pan-Asian flavors of Dim Sum on the menu, which is just a sample of the 20 diverse cuisines including Chinese (Peking Duck), Thai (Thai Red Curry), Indian, Vietnamese and Japanese. Serving lunch and dinner, enjoy a sushi roll on your work break inside the private dining room, or sip signature Mai Tai’s during after hours while taking in the views of the beautiful Buckhead skyline on the sprawling outdoor lounge, where relaxing is the norm.
Described by its owner as a club-cum-restaurant – this hip establishment takes on a nightclub vibe in the late evening, as an in-house DJ spins your favorite mixes on Friday and Saturday nights.
Insider’s Tip: Offering new weekly specials every week ranging from ½ price bottles of wine on select nights and $5 sushi rolls during limited times, be sure to call ahead or check their website for exclusive discounts.
If you’re looking for an authentic Mediterranean restaurant with marvelous prices and a fantastic atmosphere, you’re only a cab ride away. Nestled in Gramercy, Barbounia allows its customers a glimpse into a Mediterranean dream. The restaurant is dimly lit and is decorated with towering pillars, ornate arches, and lavish floral arrangements.
The menu boasts many flavorful dishes from the region, specifically the countries of Greece, Morocco, southern France and southern Italy. Such dishes include the Lamb Terracotta, which is Lamb Kebabs served with pepper chutney, pistachios, and tahini wrapped in an oven baked flat bread, and their pan-seared Yellow Fin Tuna served with creamed potatoes and vegetables. While enjoying their meal, customers can also sip on some of the many cocktails offered, including the Barbounia-tini made with fresh aloe-vera juice and foam. But that’s not all, Barbounia also offers a champagne brunch on Sunday where you can get a never ending flow of champagne cocktails for only $12!
A little tamer than say South Beach and the Design District, but making a name for itself regardless, is the new party spot: Brickell Avenue. When the lawyers, accountants and bankers put their briefcases away and leave what’s known as Miami’s Financial District the area comes alive, and leading the nightlife pack is Blue Martini.
Blue Martini is a cool place to see and be seen after the 9-5, whether it’s for happy hour or late-night. Located inside Mary Brickell Village, it’s easy to start or end the night at Martini thanks to the surrounding restaurants and shops. It’s a seven-day affair when it comes to specials here, with a daily happy hour 4-8 p.m. featuring 1/2 off drinks, live jazz Tuesdays, Latin live entertainment on Thursdays and Three Olives Ladies Night on Wednesdays. Check it out to find out what that means!
Need a little comic relief? Head to the District’s premier comedy venue, DC Improv, host to a variety of nationally touring jokesters, local celebrity headliners, and a full restaurant and bar. As the perfect alternative to the typical night out on the town, DC Improv offers Happy Hour Trivia Nights, free of charge, as well as nightly comedy acts, Tuesday through Sunday.
Seats to early shows (around 8:00pm) are offered on a first come, first serve basis so be sure to grab a ticket online beforehand and arrive early when the doors open, usually 90 minutes prior to the show. Don’t worry about killing time before the cracks begin – the theater’s restaurant offers a variety of bar bites perfect for a casual night out. After all, all shows require a two item minimum per person, anyway.
For night owls looking to laugh, grab a seat at one of the later weekend shows. Doors open at 10:00 PM for 10:30 PM performances on Fridays and Saturdays, with assigned seating based on reservation number meaning the earlier you book, the better the seat.
Insider Tip: Take advantage of DC Improv’s recession-proof, “Pay What You Can” night – a monthly series that caters to those looking to save a buck on a fun night out. Tickets are the standard $17.00; however, guests are encouraged to pay whatever they can afford for some quality entertainment. “Pay What You Can” tickets are only available the night of the show, on a first come, first serve basis.
With three locations and endless rave reviews, it’s no wonder that Café Bizou is popular all over Los Angeles, from Pasadena to Sherman Oaks to Santa Monica.
This French bistro is the perfect birthday, anniversary or first date location. Though elegant and intimate, it’s doubtful you can show up on a Friday night without spotting a sweet sixteen to your right and a newly engaged couple to your left. If mood lighting and a quiet atmosphere is your thing, then this place probably isn’t. The Santa Monica location may be beautiful, but with that beauty comes a whole lot of people.
Thanks to its two dollar corkage fee and prix fixe menus, the long wait you will experience without a reservation is most definitely worth it. Diners who swear by this café leave raving about the flourless chocolate cake and the Steak au Poivre as a few of their favorites.
Café Bizou truly takes French food to a whole other level, leaving the ritzy feeling behind and bringing family and friends together. With great food and great prices, don’t be surprised to find another location coming to a city near you.
Centered around an ultralounge that looks like a futuristic parlor—all mirrors and chandeliers, in shades of black, white, yellow, orange, Lucite, and chrome—5 Degrees aims to be as cool as its name. So does the flirty LoDo crowd, who dresses to kill before settling into wraparound booths and splurging on bottle service, mingling out on the patio, or meeting face-to-face on the small, tightly packed dance floor.
Special events are a club hallmark—from fashion shows and photo shoots to Whipped Wednesdays, as the often-themed ladies’ night is called (a recent, cheeky example: Barbie’s Birthday). In sum: keep the footwork to a minimum, the ogling to a maximum, and you’ll fit right in.
Imagine finding a steakhouse in Boston that offers quality beef at affordable prices. That’s exactly what Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar does night after night and wins “Best Steakhouse” in Boston year after year. Located across from The Boston Park Plaza Hotel in the Theater District, this elegant restaurant that has a dark wood interior with high ceilings and an open spacious dining room, was the first East Coast location for the West Coast brand.
Start off with a glass of wine from its Wine Spectator award-winning collection of 100 vintages by the glass to go along with some Blue Point oysters. There is a good selection of seafood for those who don’t like beef, but for the true carnivores, the bone-in ribeye and bone-in New York strip should not be missed. For the ultimate indulgence, try the house specialty, Fleming’s potatoes, served with cream, jalapenos and cheddar cheese, which are large enough to share with the entire table. The walnut turtle pie should be the grand finale of the evening. Visit flemingssteakhouse.com
for more information.
Insider Tip: If you sit at the bar, don’t miss the amazing deal of five for $6 until 7 p.m. promotion, which includes a choice of five cocktails, five glasses of wine and five appetizers.
An early bloom in the blossoming East Highlands, Vita has endured in the light of its special perks. Funky and arty with the works of local painters, it boasts one of the city’s few rooftop terraces, thronged on warm evenings with couples taking in a stellar view of downtown at sunset; inside, jazz combos keep the mood cool several nights a week.
Despite the Italian name, the menu skews contemporary American, with an emphasis on entree-worthy small plates like seven-hour pork braised with cherry peppers and a mini-osso buco over blue cheese polenta, many of which go for $5 or less during happy hour. Speaking of deals, bargain-bin buffs take note: the entire selection of wines by the bottle is offered at half-price on Tuesdays.
The yin to El Chapultepec’s yang, Dazzle is Denver’s other most esteemed jazz venue—and every bit as amenity-oriented as The Pec is no-frills. While its nightly lineup of both local and national talent—swing, bebop, fusion, et cetera—has won it numerous awards from both local and national media (including Downbeat), the club also gets its audience into the act via fascinating interactive programs like First Monday Art Talks and Jeff Jenkins’ Piano Conversations.
Moreover, it’s made fans, even among non-enthusiasts, with its freewheeling happy hour and the Friday Lunch Club—both featuring live music and a $5 menu—as well as the famed Sunday Urban Brunch, a sprawling all-you-can-eat affair complete with a bottomless bloody mary and mimosa bar.
The World Café Live is hands down the best place to hear music that’s not getting played on the radio. It was named best club in Philadelphia by NBCphiladelphia.com in 2009 and best new music venue by Philadelphia Magazine when it came out on the scene in 2005. Whether you’re looking for indie singer-songwriters, hip hop artists, or African drumming; The World Café Live is your destination.
One part music venue, one part restaurant, you never know what you’re going to get when walking into World Café Live. Downstairs is a three tiered music hall which seats 300 people in a bistro style set up, and as many as 650 people in the standing room only section. Upstairs is a café on historic Walnut Street. Comfortably seating 100 people, the café features live radio broadcasts and performances every day of the week. It has an extensive menu and the best happy hour specials near the Drexel Campus.
The World Café Live is also home to the annual Beta Hifi Music Festival, and puts on weekly concert series called Peanut Butter and Jams, a lunch time concert for children and their parents every Saturday. It’s safe to say that if you want live music any hour of the day, just head over to World Cafe Live.
Ever felt like you needed a drink while at the post office? Himmel Hospitality Group did too, which is why they created Post 390. Situated at the site of the former Back Bay Post Office Annex, this place boasts killer views, an impressive beer and wine selection, and super-chic clientele.
On the first floor of this two-story urban tavern, a lively bar scene of a polished after-work crowd surrounds the cozy four-sided fireplace. Upstairs, there’s a second bar, open kitchen, and a fireside dining room with floor to ceiling glass windows that showcase the unbeatable views of the John Hancock Tower and Copley Place.
The bar (or shall we say, bars) boasts one of the best beer selections in the city with 12 brews on tap and 30 microbrews available in bottles, and they also have more than 200 wine selections. Post 390 offers a wide array of aptly named Bostonian drinks, including The Green Line, Dirty Water, Boston Tea Ketel and of course, The Back Bay.
As a sister restaurant to Grill 23, Harvest and the new Bistro du Midi at The Heritage on the Garden, Post 390 showcases Chef Eric Brennan’s talent here with a modern twist on classic comfort food favorites – think beer and bacon macaroni and cheese – in a chic setting. Visit post390restaurant.com for more information.
The Sansom Street Oyster House, now known as just the Oyster House, is a classic staple of the food scene and has been serving Philadelphians fresh seafood at reasonable prices since 1947. Oyster Hour is the House’s version of happy hour, serving “Buck-A-Shuck” $1 Oysters of the Day and drink specials during weekday happy hour and late-night on Saturdays.
These mouth-watering little aphrodisiacs are a wonderful start to a night out on the town, chased down with the House’s quality cocktails. The Oyster House is also home to Philadelphia’s odd, but delicious pairing, fried oysters and chicken salad – an old 19th century tradition that started at The Union League and stayed in the city’s heart.
After being renovated a little over a year ago, the Oyster House now boasts high ceilings and industrial-chic flair; with the family’s dynamic collection of ceramic oyster plates speckling the walls, you’ll find just the right hint of personality that will make you want to come back for more.
Whether they’re pet lovers at heart or realize Los Angeles hipsters flock there regularly, Birds is the secret gem to going out in L.A. for a guaranteed good time. The laid back atmosphere still manages to bring in a cool crowd full of wannabe writers and Hollywood hipsters.
The three best times to visit Birds are for your birthday, an amazing happy hour, and when you are single on Valentine’s Day. For birthdays, the lovely employees of Birds will decorate the “birdcage” for the special event and fill it with balloons, drinks and utter humiliation from the guy with the microphone. If you are lucky enough to venture to the bar within the hours of 4pm-6pm, you might find yourself at your happiest. And finally, if you find yourself without a Valentine on the 14th, Birds has devoted an “anti-Valentine” themed gathering to draw in local singles to celebrate the anti-love.
Other than fun birthdays and an even better atmosphere, the food and drinks are equally as appealing. With a great martini list and even better food menu, there is no reason why you should be missing out on such a great experience in Hollywood.
Many bar patrons choose their favorite bar based on the people, drinks or their favorite bartender. Stats Atlanta is the place where you can find the best of all three. With five bars housed under one roof (well, one roof and an amazing skyline-filled rooftop), everyone can find the perfect spot for the weekday happy hour or to watch the game.
Fighting for the remote at home to watch tonight’s game? No worries, there are 70 televisions to catch the infamous touchdown or that game-winning three pointer here. While catching up on the latest scores from your favorite teams, try one of the Stats’ American style tasting menu selections. With items like Crabcake BLT’s, Tuna Takati Salad, and Old-Fashion Meatloaf, Stats takes your usual bar options to the next level.
Stats has an added bonus for sports fans. Atlanta’s famed sports radio station, 790 The Zone, broadcasts live on game days from a private glass enclosed booth, which is a great opportunity to watch the pros at work.
Whether you’re trying to catch last night playoff recaps or having an afternoon cocktail after work, Stats Atlanta is the place to be.
Click here for more information.
Even though Happy Hour no longer exists in Boston, don’t tell that to the patrons of City Bar at the Lenox Hotel. The hotel bar is packed nightly with an after-work crowd who come for the one-of-a-kind Infusions Diabolique, hand-infused spirits spiked with natural ingredients, like the popular Angelique tequila infused with mango, lime and pineapple.
Of course, there are also a variety of martinis (including a refreshing basil gimlet), single malts, ports, liqueurs, champagnes, beer and wine on the menu, but the infusions are a must here. If you get hungry, order up some snacks, which come from the neighboring City Table. A late night eclectic menu consists of duck confit spring rolls, chicken drumettes with Diabolique rum along with citrus and rosemary marinated olives.
City Bar also has a second location at the Westin Boston Waterfront on Summer Street where you can still get the same great drinks if you can’t make it over to Back Bay. Check out citybarboston.com for more information.
Next to the towering City Hall at the top of South Broad Street, the self-proclaimed “fresh fish authority,” McCormick & Schmick’s stands proud in the heart of Philadelphia. Over 30 varieties of fresh seafood is flown in daily from around the globe, and although these restaurants are located across the nation each one offers local specialties.
In Philly, it’s the classic fried oysters and chicken salad for lunch as well as a selection of microbrews from Philadelphia’s own Yards Brewing Company that make this seafood joint unique. M&S has grown a reputation over the years for their famous Happy Hour – offering bar food six nights a week for only $1.95. And it’s hard not to be curious about this clever take on the classic Philly cheesesteak – The Philly Tuna Cheesesteak features Ahi Tuna, Onions, Peppers and Melted Provolone.
This downtown hot spot is a great place to eat before a show (since it’s located on the Avenue of the Arts) or meet with friends for a drink. The dark mahogany walls, handcrafted stained glass ceilings and mosaic tiled floors will have you sitting back and relaxed in no time.
To any downtown intoxicologist, Cantina is the preference for ‘cocktails de culinaire.’ In fact, the bar grows its own citrus and infuses its own liquors. Bringing decades of knowledge to the bar, each Cantina mixologist is a self-proclaimed ‘savant of spirits’ who’s traveled the far corners of the world in pursuit of the finest cocktail ingredients. Cantina bartenders have a genuine love for the art and invent every drink on the menu, making your experience at Cantina completely unique. It’s no wonder Cantina’s recipes have graced the pages of The New York Times, Food & Wine, Esquire, London’s Daily Telegraph, and even Vogue.
You’d assume such famous cocktails would have equally notorious prices, but Cantina offers drinks from $9-$11. Their most prized potion is on the market for $14: The Coca Leaf Sour- Pisco infused with coca leaves, egg white, yellow chartreuse, fresh-squeezed citrus, and sugar. Of course, their $9 cocktails are just as impressive. Try the St. Barth’s Daiquiri- rhum de batiste, fresh lime & key lime bitters, luxardo maraschino & fresh-grated nutmeg.
Just remember, quality takes time so no impatient tapping on the bar at Cantina, relax and enjoy the world through its spirits.
Having launched the career of RuPaul’s Drag Race runner-up Nina Flowers, Vivid still glitters with up-and-comers like Felony Misdemeanor Sunday in and Sunday out. But cowboy-themed GLBT bar Charlie’s is much more than just a weekly stage for Denver’s premier drag show. Depending on the night (it’s open all 365), an extra-diverse and welcoming horde descends for free line-dancing lessons, raucous rounds of bingo and trivia, unreal happy hour deals—and even, yes, the occasional wet jockey shorts contest. Meanwhile, if more than the occasional Jello shot is your guilty pleasure, Charlie’s is your watering—er, gelatinizing—hole.
Oscar Wilde once said: “Work is the curse of the drinking class,” and if you’ve been to The Castro’s newest and most popular neighborhood bar, Blackbird, you’ll completely understand. You’ll find a drink for everyone in your group with wines by the glass, artisan microbrews on draft, and proper classic cocktails- and none of them will drain your wallet, even after the 5-8pm happy hour is over.
For years the area has had only two choices when it comes to happy hour– dive bars for the straight community or pricey lounges for the gay crowd. Blackbird, with expert precision, has nailed the art of comfort and class for the mixed-crowd atmosphere.
To create a Blackbird: blend historical newsprints with local modern art, an old-world cherry wood bar with contemporary seating, and a top shelf drink list handwritten on 8 feet of butcher paper, and the neighborhood bar is ready. Do not garnish with a cover, fancy dress code, or water down with unemployed barflies- just a twist of chic will do.
The hype’s as low as the loyalty is high at Panzano, a downtown fixture that’s so dependable day in and day out you could almost be forgiven for taking chef Elise Wiggins’s enormous talent for granted. But don’t. Even as it morphs from a power breakfast and lunch spot to a happy hour haunt to a pre-theater rendezvous, Wiggins’s creative energy never wanes, whether she’s popping out zeppole (doughnut holes), flipping her signature crespelle ai funghi (mushroom crepes), or whipping up ever-intriguing pastas (keep your eyes peeled for dried fruit). Meanwhile, matching her knack for contemporary Italian cookery is her passion for sustainability; going beyond organic, she launched a nose-to-tail steer program in mid-2009.
Yet another bonus: the bread basket’s one of Denver’s best.
Tucked away in a courtyard about as obscure as a place on the coveted guest list, lies George, the newest addition to the semi-private bars that encompass the popular Georgetown social scene. George’s ultra-exclusive vibe caters to young Washingtonians looking to mingle with a hand-picked crowd, in a relaxed yet refined setting.
Just opened in August 2009, George has an upscale, tavern-like feel with oversized brass bars studded with substantial leather bar chairs. Washed in warm, olive hues and outfitted in historic decor inspired by colonial Georgetown, George lends a nod to tradition with a uniquely modern sensibility – perfect for its young, conservative crowd looking to party with some class.
Lured by a DJ spinning popular late-night favorites, list members and their guests tend to pile in after 10pm on weekend nights. A nearly pitch-black dance floor is the place to be if you’re looking to party hard with some Georgetown movers and shakers. Who knows, you may even learn a move or two from Washington Nationals star, Ryan Zimmerman, a frequent patron of the bar.
Insider Tip: List or no list, the bar is open to the public on Thursdays and Fridays for Happy Hour from 6-9 PM, so grab a comfy leather seat at the bar and get a feel for what its like to be a card-carrying member.
The Cafe has been The Castro’s favorite venue for years, welcoming everyone gay and straight to enjoy a one-of-a-kind dancing and drinking experience. Having recently undergone a multi-million dollar transformation, The Cafe’s makeover is like treating its faithful patrons to a thinner and more successful boyfriend.
Let the thump of The Café’s state of the art sound system lead you upstairs to any of the three bars for a two-for-one happy hour. Try not to spend the evening staring blindly at any of the 12 HD flat screens, because there’s a much better view on the dance floor. The Café also features an open-air atrium (complete with retractable glass awning should the weather get touchy) in the middle of the bar to help cool off after that Michael Jackson dance routine.
It’s been a long-standing tradition in the Castro to meet any night of theweek for The Cafe’s legendary happy hour. You’ll see many familiar faces so don’t be afraid to go alone. If all this isn’t enough, the bartenders are appealing too.
Sure, Grapevine has a killer rooftop with views of the Dallas skyline, but then everything gets curiously odd from there. For starters, it has a basketball court. The clientele is everyone from yuppie lawyers to the local gay and lesbian crowd. It has mismatched glassware that is purchased bi-weekly from the local Goodwill.
And without any mass advertising, except word-of-mouth through the grapevine, this place is packed to the brim every night.
Grapevine says, “Our customers are like our glasses; they’re all different!” And that’s exactly why Tracy Hutson, and nightlife critics from AOL to Dallas.com, loves this bar. Tracy Hutson has a lot in common with Grapevine. She blends her philanthropic nature with eclectic design from her ABC’s “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” job to her Dallas nightlife spot. And she always has fun doing both!
**Tracy Hutson is a native Texan and style consultant on ABC’s Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, author of Feathering the Nest: Tracy Hutson’s Eco-friendly Guide to Decorating Your Baby’s Room, and founder of Tracy Hutson Designs.
Here the beer flows, the crowds are loud, and the atmosphere is just right!
There’s no better place than New Deck Tavern to grab a cold pint and a Philly, cheese steak that is, with friends after a hard day’s work. Although the grub’s unbeatable, the happy hour is what’s got people coming back for more. The Deck boasts a vast array of beers from around the world as well as one of the largest single malt scotch collections in Philly. They’re proud to pour the best pint in the city, thanks to their European Draft System imported straight from Country Cork.
Study up for Quizo Pub Trivia on Wednesdays, or, perhaps, get your sing on for Karaoke Tuesdays. This pub’s got it all, with live music, Monday night football, and more. Stop by any night of the week and confirm that the Irish sure know how to party.
This is undoubtedly Fisherman’s Wharf’s waterfront hotspot. Balmy breezes rolling right off the San Francisco Bay add to the sheer bliss of the seafood inspired menu at Castagnola’s Restaurant. Favorites include fresh specialties like the Cedar Plank King Salmon and Whole Main Lobster, but there’s also steaks, lamb, and veal for the meat lovers.
If you like a little sizzle to your meal, Castagnola’s offers entertainment like nightly live comedy and jazz during happy hour. There’s good food, great entertainment, and sophisticated cocktails-all with a beautiful view- at Castagnola’s.