For a booming nightlife scene, look no further than Memphis – the home of Elvis Presley and rock’n’roll certainly still knows how to party. On Beale Street you can dance and sing in the footsteps of music legends, and all over town there are speakeasies, wine bars, nightclubs, live music venues and places to play drinking games. Check out these party spots on your next adventure to Memphis, Tennessee.
Knifebird is a chic, cozy wine bar in the hip Cooper Young neighborhood. The wine list consists of varieties and brands from all over the world. There is also a top-notch beer and cocktail list for those who don’t want wine. The salads, sandwiches and cheese and meat boards are more than just snacks; beautifully presented, they are works of art.
In the 1970s Lafayette’s helped launch the career of big-name musicians. Billy Joel, Barry Manilow and Leon Russell all played here before striking it big. Now this live music venue is where locals head seven nights a week to discover new artists or listen to their favorites perform. Sit on the balcony for a bird’s-eye view of the action. The food menu is extensive, and there is something for everybody.
Memphis Rec Room is a 6,000sq ft (557sq m) playground for adults. This bar is all about games. You can battle old or new friends at ping pong or foosball. There are ample board games to go around from Jenga to Cards Against Humanity. Groups can lounge on sofas while playing video games that are displayed on 20ft (6m) screens. On a nice day you’ll find corn hole and flip-cup battles on the patio.
Loflin Yard is a sprawling outdoor bar and restaurant in downtown Memphis. Once the home of downtown’s carriage fleet, there is a barn where bands now play live music. There are two lawns with rocking chairs, lawn games (including axe throwing) and bonfires. Try a barrel-aged cocktail made with local spirits or a craft beer made at one of the breweries in the neighborhood. The food menu offers southern treats from brisket nachos to pimento cheese burgers.
Railgarten offers an entire universe of fun. The bar spans 1.5 acres (0.6ha) and has something for everybody. There is a ping pong bar, an ice cream parlor, a speakeasy that serves absinthe, a tiki bar and a diner. Outside are playgrounds, volleyball courts, bonfires and stages where some of the best bands, from Memphis and around the country, perform regularly. Come early and stay all night long; there is a lot to explore.
Art Bar in Crosstown Arts is a true speakeasy; many locals don’t even know it’s there. It’s located in the gigantic Crosstown Concourse, a multi-use development that used to be a Sears distribution center. Inside the bar you’ll find multiple rooms, each with their own decor and style. Browse the space before choosing your favorite. Then lay back and indulge in one of the inventive cocktails on the menu.