The largest city in the U.S. state of Minnesota and bisected by the Mississippi River, Minneapolis exists as a unique blend of natural beauty and urban development. While there are many parks and lakes throughout the city, Minneapolis is also a hub of cultural landmarks and entertainment. For a perfect night out after a day in the city or casual afternoon drink, here are a few of Minneapolis’ coolest cocktail bars.
Marked only by a bouncer and a purple door, Marvel Bar embodies the feel of an underground speakeasy. When you walk into the matchbox-sized place you will see the bar, a few snug little booths, and of course striking purple cloud wallpaper to match the outside door. The eclectic décor and avant-garde cocktails draw in a hipster crowd, but the experienced cocktail crafting-staff at Marvel welcome all seeking to try a little something different. Influenced and trained by Johnny Michaels—the most acclaimed mixologist in the city—the staff at Marvel have mastered the classics and created a few new cocktails of their own. One of the most famous is the Oliveto, mixed with olive oil, raw egg white, lemon, Licor 43, and Gordon’s—but the menu features other elixirs as well, like the Gatsby made with salt, apricot, Benedictine, and Tomatin 12yr or the After Eight made with Chartreuse VEP, Branca Menta, and Cynar. Whether you seek one of these unique mixes or prefer your whiskey neat, Marvel Bar offers a one of a kind speakeasy environment with expert staff at your service.
Marvel Bar, 50 N 2nd Ave, Minneapolis, MN, USA + 1 612 206 3929
Located within downtown’s Graves 601 Hotel, the Bradstreet Neighborhood Craftshouse offers a cocktail and dining experience inside the classy digs of a Prohibition-inspired lounge. With luxurious fabrics, finely crafted woods, and intimate lighting Bradstreet features a warm and welcoming environment with inviting spaces to cozy up to a cocktail. While the restaurant serves some unique American comfort food with Asian and Moorish influences, the cocktails are most definitely the highlight of the show. Skillful bartenders craft classic and innovative cocktails and specialty drinks made from fresh ingredients, hand pressed juices and house made bitters. Described as a ‘drinkable art,’ the cocktails range from the Bradstreet Cocktail mixed with Jim Beam Rye, jasmine, ginger, lemon, and egg white to the Bimini Road Smash made with Plantation 3 star rum, Zwack, Demerara, lemon, orange, mint, and Peychaud’s bitters. If cocktails aren’t your thing, Bradstreet also offers a large selection of tap beers, wines, and spirits that will satiate any palate.
Bradstreet Neighborhood Craftshouse, 1930 Hennepin Ave, Minneapolis, MN, USA + 1 612 871 1200
Located underneath the Borough restaurant, Parlour features a cozy environment of comfortable plush seating and mood lighting to enjoy a romantic evening date or intimate after dinner drinks. Serving up bar bites, beer, wine, and of course cocktails, Parlour uses fresh squeezed juice, house made syrups, elixirs, and rare artisanal spirits to concoct their classic and signature cocktail creations. Try anything from the 7 Year Itch made with 7 yr. rum, sherry, ginger, lemon, Jamaican bitters #1, and cream sod to the Trade Winds with apple brandy, Jamaican rum, byrrh, benedictine, amaro sibilla, and angostura. For the Monty Python fans out there, you might be tempted to try Tim the Enchanter—a mix of rum, allspice, orange-champagne vinegar, lime, seltzer, and flamed angostura. With other clever names like No Regrets, Age Before Beauty, All the Single Ladies, and Wise Beyond His Years, you will just have to stop in and see for yourself what gives these cheeky cocktails their names. Whether you come in with date or enter to enjoy the after work happy hour, Parlour offers a comfortable environment with a satisfying menu full of unique concoctions.
Parlour, 730 N Washington Ave, Minneapolis, MN, USA + 1 612 354 3135
Ike’s Food & Cocktails is a downtown Minneapolis hangout spot featuring some of the best American comfort food around in a cozy pub-like setting. While Ike’s is known for fantastic burgers and satisfying eats like lobster corndogs, smoked pulled pork sandwiches, and triple threat chili, the restaurant also serves up some great accompanying cocktails. One specialty at Ike’s is called the 24K Margarita, treated with the ‘reverence found in the grand style of Mexico’s haciendas.’ Fresh squeezed lime juice, Cuervo Gold, Cointreau, Grand Marnier and a dash of orange juice all comprise the greatness of the 24K Margarita. With a full bar, Ike’s Food & Cocktails can whisk together any drink of choosing whether it be one of the classics or an experiment of your own. Also a popular spot for brunch, Ike’s is proud to serve the Weekender Bloody Mary, A 20 oz. drink made to order with Sobieski Vodka, Sacramento tomato juice, Tabasco Sauce, horseradish, L&P Worcestershire Sauce, salt and pepper. The glass is rimmed with Kosher Salt and Celery Salt then garnished with a celery stalk, and lime wedge. The whole thing is then topped off with a skewer of pepperoncini, black olive, green olive, cocktail onion, baby dill pickle and creamy American cheese, plus another skewer of chilled shrimp and spicy smoked beef stick. At Ike’s, the bloody Mary cocktail is a meal in itself.
Ike’s Food & Cocktails, 50 South 6th St, Minneapolis, MN, USA + 1 612 746 4537