Miami’s nightlife may be buzzing with glam clubs and fancy bars, but sometimes you just crave a casual place to get your drink on without all the fuss. Here’s our round-up of the best dive bars in Miami.
Sandbar Sports Grill
The sprawling bar in Coconut Grove offers plenty of space for your party of 20 or more, but you can also take a seat at the bar if you’re partying solo. The best alternative to Miami Beach’s crowded streets, this alcove is a magnet for eccentric folks wanting to get down while in the suburbs of Coconut Grove all while being walking distance from pizza joints and restaurants for when you want a bite to eat.
Sandbar Sports Grill, 3064 Grand Ave, Miami, FL, USA, +1 305 444 5270
The Corner is a hit or miss depending on which week night you go, but it’s the ideal spot to blow off some steam after a long work day. The bar offers happy hour deals on drinks and grub (like $3 for a massive hot dog or $4 for a glass of wine). Visit during the weekend around 1 am when the crowd is heavy with hipsters for some delicious cocktails and a bottomless option of spirits – so much so bartenders use a ladder to reach them. The dark interior looks every bit like a European saloon with its wood-beam construction and candlelit tables – making it ironically romantic for a low-key date. The exterior is for smoking breaks and every now and then, stray cats.
The Corner, 1035 N Miami Ave, Miami, FL, USA, +1 305 961 7887
Perched a few blocks from the center of Wynwood’s mayhem, good old Gramps plays host to a variety of acts from live bands, comedy nights to Nerd Nite – an event with speeches and trivia for intellectuals – making it a go-to for entertainment as well as a glass of cold beer. Aside from air conditioning (advertised on the building’s façade), Gramps also has a tiny Cuban-style window from where you can order pizza.
Gramps, 176 NW 24th St, Miami, FL, USA, +1 305 699 2669
Bougainvillea’s Old Florida Tavern
Bougie’s in South Miami is the place you’d likely run into an old fling from college (if you’re a Miami native). The local favorite in an intimate old Florida house is the spot to go and linger around with a good beer or take the stage for a karaoke session. The bar has cheap drinks, rock bands playing live, and plenty of TV’s if you want to catch a game of whatever is playing.
For almost 40 years, Churchill’s Pub has been the spot where tourists and locals alike come to listen to live jazz, rock bands and get utterly trashed because this joint in Little Haiti is anything but classy – and we love it that way. Hang around for cheap beer and live acts you can’t unsee, it’s a total no-judgement zone where recklessness is welcome.
Churchill’s Pub, 5501 Northeast 2nd Avenue, Miami,FL, USA, +1 305 757 1807
Mac’s Club Deuce
Officially Miami’s oldest bar since Tobacco Road closed its doors, Mac’s is famous. With a neon pink interior and questionable visitors, it’s been there through the 80s when Miami was the cocaine trafficking capital of the world. Anthony Bourdain loves it here as does Playboy. A dingy South Beach venue with plenty history, it lives on through Miami’s changing skyline.
Mac’s Club Deuce, 222 14th St, Miami Beach, FL, USA, +1 305 531 6200
Titanic Restaurant & Brewery
Just by the University of Miami, Titanic’s a college kid favorite. But with Sunday’s karaoke, jazz and blues acts, and a cozy interior, everyone drops by for an evening at this old pub. Worth checking out is their seafood menu of mussels and crawfish bisque for those late night cravings.