When it comes to extraordinarily cool bars in Rio de Janeiro, there is no neighborhood quite like Botafogo. From wine bars and rock houses to hipster pubs that combine drinking with artistic collaborations, Botafogo is the most exciting nightlife spot in Rio right now. Here are some of the best bars in Botafogo that set the scene for a memorable night out.
This small yet cozy venue combines chic with homely decor to create a pleasant setting for an evening out. Several awards from prestigious Brazilian critics adorn the walls, showing WineHouse’s importance on the bar scene in Rio. As the name suggests, it’s all about the wine and there’s a solid range of both local and imported selections. To compliment your wine, try the bruschettas – a house specialty – and the homemade guacamole.
Bakery, Deli, Restaurant, Bar, Sandwich Shop, French, Brazilian, Fast Food, Vegetarian, $$$
Its easy convenience of being right next to the subway entrance is a bonus, yet it would be worth making the effort to go to Le Depanneur even if it wasn’t. The candles on the table and the wide, open-air terrace set the scene for a romantic night, while the relaxed environment makes it just as pleasing for solo travelers enjoying an evening for one. The surrounding streets are abuzz with locals rushing through their day-to-day lives, creating a perfect place for people-watching. Inside the venue is a large bakery serving plenty of fresh goodies. It’s an ideal spot for wine and a cheese board, or a chilled beer with a delicious pasta dish.
Located inside a large, airy building, the exposed brickwork on the walls coupled with long, wooden beams create a classic pub feel. Quirky touches such as a dartboard on the wall, black lighting in the bathroom, and repurposed piping for the taps and sinks add to the homely atmosphere. Thursday nights are karaoke where keen audience members blast out legendary rock tracks alongside a live band. The beers are well worth checking out here, with a selection of local craft beers that go perfectly with the homemade pastels or gourmet burgers.
One of the first of a stream of new, quirky bars in Botafogo, Comuna is nowadays an established venue on the nightlife circuit. The low lighting and outdoor patio make an ideal spot for casually sipping on beers and mingling, plus the regular pop-up fashion and art events lend the venue a creative edge. Besides the pleasant venue itself, the main draw is the huge, homemade burgers washed down by a couple of extra chilled beers.
Coordenandas Bar is centered around a long wooden table with multiple seating, perfect for chatting among friends while checking out the crowd. The decor is light and breezy creating the bar’s trendy vibe while maintaining a relaxed, friendly atmosphere. This is the place for cocktails with several potent yet delicious options to choose from. Fill up first though on any of the nibbles on the menu, which are mostly typical Brazilian snacks with a modern flair.
One of the oldest and most established bars on the Botafogo nightlife scene, Bar Bukowski is Rio’s most beloved – and pretty much only – rock bar, playing indie, rock and metal music. The bar is a two-story reformed mansion with several spaces for live music and an outdoor garden for drinking and mingling. The mixed crowd is mostly young professionals and older who go there to get their fix of rock ‘n’ roll on the weekends.
The natural decor of sprawling vines, elegant plants and leafy decorations create an authentic jungle feel at the Jungle Garden Pub. Its pleasing environment instantly puts visitors at ease as they settle down to enjoy the wide range of cocktails and excellent live music. It’s the place to go to meet people, as the sociable atmosphere makes striking up a conversation with others a breeze.
The yellow lighting at Bar Teto Solar leaves a soft, warm environment spiced up with quirky touches such as a car suspended from the ceiling. The fancy joint serves a wide selection of craft beer on tap in addition to excellent cocktails. Start the night downstairs for drinking, eating and chatting. When the drinks kick in, head upstairs to the dancefloor to get your groove on.
Hocus Pocus is a local craft beer that has become tremendously popular on the Carioca beer scene. So popular that the brand opened its own bar that serves just Hocus Pocus beers on tap, accompanied by a delicious menu including hearty burgers for a more satisfying meal to marinated octopus for something lighter. The venue itself is charming with exposed brickwork and timber beams adding to the traditional, artisanal feel.
The first bar in Brazil to exclusively sell champagne, Champanharia Ovelha Negra – or the Black Sheep Champagne Bar – is the perfect spot for both imported and local champagnes. Being in a busy commercial part of Botafogo, the venue attracts a buzzing crowd of people who drop in for an after-work drink. Large tubs of ice keep your champagne perfectly chilled, one of the reasons the venue gets packed from 8 pm onwards.