Essential Cocktail Bars From Coast to Coast

Essential Cocktail Bars From Coast to Coast

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A Food & Drink map by

From classic cocktail haunts to tiki dens to whiskey libraries, here's where you're guaranteed a great drink in a unique atmosphere from coast to coast.

25 Places
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    If you've got but one night to kill in Boston, and cocktails are your fancy, Drink is the move. Veteran restaurateur Barbara Lynch is behind this industrial-designed basement bar that crafts a menu-less list of bespoke fresh fruit libations with quality spirits. Don't forget to Uber home.
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    Canon is an old reliable but still generates plenty of buzz for its truly outstanding cocktails and astounding whiskey collection. Do yourself a favor and make a reservation.
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    Jack Rose was already the city's (maybe even the country's) top whiskey bar. Now, there's solid Southern food to match, courtesy of new chef Russell Jones. The bar has been serving tiki on the roof, and serves as a speakeasy of sorts called Dram & Grain in the basement - find most of the whiskey on the main level.
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    Come to Bílý Kůň for absinthe and exotic liqueurs, as well as the usual suspects on the cocktail menu and a Czech heavy beer list. The real draw is the space itself, which is dimly lit and bustling, with high ceilings and walls graced by several taxidermied ostrich heads.
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    Arnauds's French 75 is not wanting for atmosphere with it's vintage bar and back bar in what is already a classic restaurant. Excellent service, and classic cocktails made with flair enhance the elegant feeling you get from just being there.
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    This speakeasy lounge located in Philadelphia's Chinatown has been focused on quality, style, and mystery since its opening three years ago. The well liquor list is famous for being composed of premium and super premium bottles, and the dress code means you aren't coming inside with shorts or sneakers. Excellent drinks are to be had but no photos, so you'll have to bring your friends with if you want to share the experience.
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    If you've found your way into a bar through a secret entrance sometime since 2007, you probably have PDT to thank. It was the groundbreaking, relatively secret place that put an illicit twist on getting a drink. Since then, after all of the speakeasy imitators and competitors, PDT still stands in the same obscured location, having become an icon in the category and the city.
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    Beast chef Naomi Pomeroy goes into unexpected territory with this bar across the street from her famed restaurant. Expatriate, a collaboration between Pomeroy and onetime St. Jack bar manager Kyle Webster, pairs expertly mixed cocktails with an Asian-inflected take on drinking food. Drinks are simultaneously complex yet oddly familiar, and this may be the only place in the world where crab rangoon can sit alongside James Beard's onion-and-butter sandwich. Both are delicious, and the result is as escapist as the bar's name suggests.
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    Noble Experiment is a low capacity speakeasy whose name recalls the "noble experiment" of Prohibition. Once you've found the correct door, concealed in Neighborhood restaurant, you'll be in the hands of San Diego's best bartenders. Try ordering the dealer's choice which is the best way for them to show off their talents.
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    Nesteled in the Freehand Hotel/Hostel, The Broken Shaker is all about fun. The outdoor space has plenty of room to play and lounge with lawn games and a pool. Meanwhile, the celebrated bar has a retro vibe and a rotating list of cocktails using ingredients grown on the premises.
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