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Octubre 12, 2016
The flashy, Las Vegas-style clubs in Miami may get most of the attention in the Miami nightlife headlines, but there are plenty of other great places to grab a drink in the city. The best bars in Miami run the gamut from rooftop bars with stunning views to top-notch cocktail dens helmed by award-winning mixologists. The best part? They don’t all require patrons to don flashy designer duds nor pay a cover charge, just to pass through the velvet ropes.
Photograph: Courtesy of The Anderson
Indulge your sense of nostalgia and love for ’80s kitsch at this MiMO gem, injecting new life into the former Magnum Lounge space—home to Miami’s oldest bar. Much of what’s left and all of what’s been added seems frozen in time, harkening back to decades when David Bowie ruled, Pac-Man not Candy Crush was what you did to blow off your friends and music came from a jukebox. The result is the collective efforts of Broken Shaker/Bar Lab's Gabe Orta and Elad Zvi and the Workshop Collective's Jourdan Binder, plus Vagabond chef Alex Chang, who the guys enlisted to helm the eccentric bar menu (think cool-ranch beef crackling and French escargot). The cocktails menu is in keeping with the old-school theme, striking a balance between classics like the Sex on the Beach and new favorites, such as the rum-based Nobody Puts Baby In a Corner.
709 NE 79th St., Miami.
at NE 7th Ave.
Mon-Thu 5pm-2am; Fri-Sat 5pm-4am; Sun 4pm-2am.
Photograph: Courtesy of Michael Pisarri, The Regent Cocktail Club
The lauded addition to the Collins Avenue cocktail crawl continues to gain plenty of accolades, as cordial mixologists—waistcoats and all—pour deliciously inventive drinks in a space that feels worlds away from the hustle of South Beach, yet is in the heart of it all. The Club’s retro stylings, complete with leather banquettes, live lounge music and a side patio for cigar smoking, make it feel as if the Rat Pack could walk through the door at any moment.
Gale South Beach 1690 Collins Ave., Miami.
at 17th St.
Sun-Thu 7pm–2am; Fri-Sat 7pm–3am.
Photograph: Courtesy of Adrian Gaut, The Broken Shaker
The Broken Shaker at everyone’s favorite high-end hostel, The Freehand, started as a pop-up cocktail bar before becoming something more permanent—and its success as a mainstay kicked off the Mid-Beach neighborhood’s renaissance. Inside, the tiny award-winning bar is like the love child of New Orleans and Paris, while the outdoor courtyard and poolside area feel very Eden: old-school fountain, mismatched and wildly patterned chairs, lush trees. The cocktail list changes every 10 days based on what’s fresh, and most ingredients are grown or made on the property. The drinks skew tropical and tiki, but the bartenders are fully equipped to serve anything you request. The brains behind the Shaker also oversee the food and beverage program at 27 Restaurant, the neighboring eatery located inside a quintessential Florida house from the 1930s.
Freehand Miami 2727 Indian Creek Dr., Miami.
at 28th St.
Photograph: Courtesy of Ball & Chain
Today’s Ball & Chain is a recreation of a 1930s hotspot that once occupied the same space and welcomed jazz superstars like Billie Holiday, Count Basie and Chet Baker to its stage. Across from the historic Tower Theater, the Ball & Chain has its own storied past filled with Jewish and Cuban community influences. We recommend sampling a few Cuban-inspired cocktails: the Mojito Criollo (made the classic way with the mint leaves left intact for enhanced aroma, and more sugar), the Canita (white rum, lime, house-made honey syrup, guarapo or sugarcane juice, sugarcane stick) and the Pastelito Daiquiri (pastelito-infused aged rum, lime, simple syrup, and a side of pastelitos or guava pastries). Expect live jazz at 6pm sharp Thursday through Saturday. On Saturdays, a wild Cuban fiesta, La Pachanga, kicks off around 9pm when salsa dancers take to the bar.
1513 SW 8th St., Miami.
at SW 15th Ave.
Mon-Wed 12pm-midnight, Thu-Sat 12pm-3am, Sun 2pm-midnight.
Photograph: Courtesy of Sweet Liberty Drinks & Supply Company/Kristam Burello
The collective experience local restaurateurs and nightlife pros Dan Binkiewicz, David Martinez and John Lermayer (of Purdy Lounge, Michy's and The Regent Cocktail Club, respectively) bring to Sweet Liberty is what makes this space much more than just a bar—think killer drinks, sophisticated bar snacks and DJs who think beyond the Top 40. Where else can you order cauliflower nachos, a rum old fashioned and dance the night away to '90s hip-hop?
237-B 20th St., Miami Beach.
at Liberty Ave.
Mon-Sat 4pm-5am; Sun 11am-5am.
Photograph: Courtesy of The Mandarin Oriental, MO Bar and Lounge
MO Bar and Lounge in the Mandarin Oriental is the most elegant bar in town: The cocktails are refined and the panoramic view of Brickell’s skyline is extraordinary. And while it certainly caters to glamorous connoisseurs, the bar also manages to remain accessible to curious newcomers yearning for a taste of the city’s cocktail scene. The bartenders know their stuff and they like talking, an unexpected treat for bar-goers who want a meaningful conversation about what they’re drinking and why it’s so special. For limitless chatter, order a quintessential island treat by way of the legendary Hemingway Daiquiri, a hand-shaken union of rum, Maraschino liqueur, fresh grapefruit and lime juice.
The Mandarin Oriental, 500 Brickell Key Dr., Miami.
at Brickell Dr.
Sun-Thu 8am-midnight; Fri-Sat 8am-1am.
Photograph: Courtesy of Blackbird Ordinary
If drinking tequila and/or whiskey into the wee hours is your idea of a great night out, welcome home. Truth be told, there’s nothing ordinary about Blackbird; in a town full of blink-and-you’ll-miss-’em bars, this one’s got a distinct personality. And staying power too. Take your libations straight up or in a handcrafted cocktail. The signature Blackbird—a mix of sweet tea vodka, fresh lemonade and blackberries served on the rocks—is the perfect antidote to the sizzling south Florida sun.
729 SW 1st Ave., Miami.
at SW 8th St.
Mon-Fri 3pm-5am; Sat-Sun 5pm-5am.
Photograph: Courtesy of The Corner
This dark corner bar is a far cry from its outrageous neighbors in downtown Miami’s nightclub district, though it’s become a popular spot pre or post E11even, the adjacent 24-hour strip club. Step inside Miami’s version of a saloon for a closer look at the impressive back bar. Craving a scotch from way up top? No problem. The barkeeps here use a wooden ladder to navigate the extensive collection of spirits (a solid list of craft beers and wines is also available). Cocktails like the La Tacubaya (tequila, Green Chartreuse, lime juice, hibiscus, agave syrup and habanero bitters) are made with the freshest ingredients. Appreciative locals pack the bar and sidewalk every night of the week, though Tuesdays attract an especially hipster-heavy crowd—perhaps it’s the live jazz? Surviving the late-night revelry is more likely if you fuel up on tasty bar bites.
1035 N Miami Ave., Miami.
at NW 11th St.
Mon-Thu 4pm-5am; Fri-Sat 4pm-8am; Sun 7pm-5am.
Photograph: Courtesy of AARPHOTO
Sick of candy-colored martinis? Seek salvation in this hole-in-the-wall-turned-microbrewery, which offers rare European imports plus several own-made beers. Luckily, it didn’t lose its classic dive-bar soul in the conversion process—or the dartboard. It’s a fine place to meet the locals, and even better when preceded by a meal at Southern food star Yardbird right next door.
1115 16th St., Miami.
at Alton Rd.
Photograph: Courtesy of Foxhole Bar/Gary James
On the bay side of South Beach—far removed from the main tourist and nightclub drag—Foxhole Bar means it when it refers to itself as an "upscale locals’ joint." This late-night hotspot is still jumping as the sun starts to rise, with Miamians jockeying for position among the plush banquettes or playing darts and pool. At the beginning of the night, early birds can take advantage of the weekday happy hour (5pm to 8pm), offering $3 beers and $5 cocktails.
1218 14th Court, Miami Beach.
at Alton Rd.