The Best Bars In Fresno, California

Camp right along the Kings River in Fresno, California
Camp right along the Kings River in Fresno, California | © Bon Koo / Alamy Stock Photo
Ross Walker

Fresno’s bar scene is an eclectic mix of dive bars and pool halls, with a few wine tasting bars and trendy lounges. We encourage you to check out a few of these spots in Fresno to get a sense of the local community. Read ahead for the 10 best bars in Fresno, California.

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Red Wave Inn

Tasting platter with samples of assorted beer, cider, and mead

The Red Wave Inn is a friendly neighborhood bar that sells cheap beers in big mugs. Expect a younger crowd, and don’t expect any craft cocktails or fancy liquor, Red Wave Inn is all about beer and cider. The food at Red Wave isn’t bad either, so try the tacos or the nachos.

The Brig

Depending on who you talk to, the Brig is either a dive bar, sports bar, or college bar, or maybe a little bit of all three. Regardless of The Brig’s category, it definitely fits on this list of Fresno’s best bars. Head here for cheap drinks, fun activities like pool, darts, and karaoke.

Spokeasy Public House

Calling all craft beer aficionados, Spokeasy Public House will be your favorite bar in Fresno. The space may be small, but it’s fairly laid back and not often crowded. The bartender has an amazing handle on the craft beer scene and can give you a great recommendation suited to your tastes. There is a street fighter game in the back as well as a few boardgames if you’d like a bit of diversion while you sip on craft beer.

The Bar

With a meta name like The Bar, you’re sure to assume that this place is filled with pretentious hipsters, but you would be quite incorrect. The Bar is a dive in most respects, save for the creative cocktails on the menu. During the earlier hours you can enjoy a game of pool, but later in the night, The Bar hosts DJs and most of the patrons get up to dance.

The Mad Duck

The Mad Duck is best described as a sports bar meets gastropub. The food here is delicious and served late into the night. The Mad Duck, like many Fresno bars, has an extensive beer list, but you should really try their home brewed Mad Duck beer before ordering anything else. If you aren’t a beer drinker, try the house made sangria.

Hook & Ladder Lounge

For a stiff drink at a good price, head to Hook & Ladder Lounge. Hook & Ladder is a local favorite, likely due to the great service and the fair prices. The bar does have a dive vibe, so we recommend it for a casual hangout with friends rather than a date spot or a place to bring the parents.

The Standard Restaurant And Lounge

If you’ve been looking for a fancy cocktail lounge, then look no farther than The Standard. The Standard oozes class, and has a killer martini list and an outdoor patio with firepits. Our favorites are the Pom Pom (pomegranate martini) and the One Night Stand (pineapple martini). If you like a cigar with your martini, check out the cigar room in the Standard, you can enjoy a number of fines cigars with your drink.

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