The 5 Best Speakeasies in Seattle

Enjoy the intimate settings of speakeasies
Enjoy the intimate settings of speakeasies | © star5112 / Flickr
Samantha Ladwig

There’s something about speakeasies that turn normal Friday outings into rousing adventures.

Whether it’s their intimate setting or air of exclusivity, these retro establishments hidden inside hotels and restaurants or narrow alleyways never fail to provide nighttime thrills.

Lucky for Seattleites, the Emerald City has a few Prohibition Era-themed cocktail bars scattered throughout its liveliest neighborhoods such as Capitol Hill and Fremont. Below are five of Seattle’s best speakeasies.

1. Knee High Stocking Co.

Bar, Cocktail Bar, American

© star5112 / Flickr
The Knee High Stocking Co. may not be the easiest to find, but it’s one of Seattle’s most beloved speakeasies. It’s a tiny, unmarked cocktail bar along Olive Way in the Capitol Hill neighborhood, and while reservations aren’t required, the Knee High Stocking Company does recommend making them. Don’t bother calling though; the business that prides itself on its historically accurate cocktails asks that guests text their expected time of arrival, adding to the secrecy of this hidden gem.

2. The Backdoor at Roxy’s

Cocktail Bar, American

© My Aching Head / Flickr
The Backdoor at Roxy’s is a speakeasy lounge located in the Fremont neighborhood. As its name suggests, visitors can access the bar simply by going behind Roxy’s Diner. The lounge offers everything from craft cocktails, pub-style entrées, and rich late-night bites. With occasional live music, this 1920s-inspired establishment is a perfect spot to kick back and relax after a long day.

3. Needle & Thread

Cocktail Bar, Bar, American

The Needle and Thread serves prohibition-inspired cocktails
© Cseh Ioan / Alamy Stock Photo

One of the many bars that occupy Seattle’s vibrant Capitol Hill neighborhood is Tavern Law, and inside that bar is another. The infamous 25-seat speakeasy Needle & Thread is only accessible by way of an old bank vault door located upstairs above the Tavern Law restaurant. Reservations are required, which guests can make via their website, and don’t expect a drink menu. The Prohibition-inspired cocktails are prepared as the expert bartenders see fit. Just give them a mood, and they’ll work their magic.

4. The Tin Lizzie Lounge

Bar, Cocktail Bar, American

© star5112 / Flickr

At the bottom of Queen Anne Hill sits the historic MarQueen Hotel. And inside the hotel is the 1920s-themed speakeasy, The Tin Lizzie Lounge. While this one isn’t password-protected, its position in the basement of the hotel exudes the type of exclusivity that so many speakeasy enthusiasts seek. With Prohibition-themed cocktails concocted by the bartenders themselves and an assortment of rich small bites and flavorful entrées, The Tin Lizzie Lounge is a definite crowd pleaser.

5. Bathtub Gin & Co.

Bar, Cocktail Bar, American

© star5112 / Flickr

In the Belltown neighborhood and underneath the Humphrey Apartments is the 39-seat speakeasy, Bathtub Gin & Co. This Prohibition-themed cocktail bar was built in 2009, but its unpretentious décor and intimate setting are sure to throw visitors back to the 1920s. Guests can locate the entrance via the alleyway behind the brick building, between 1st and 2nd Streets. Once inside, take a load off at the six-seat bar or on one of the small couches and enjoy a finely crafted Old Fashioned.

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