Blink…You Missed ‘Em…..
The anatomy of any great city is its locals who will always tell you the best places to frequent even if they don’t top the national glitzy list. Unquestionably the easiest category is the best Dive Bar in Louisville.
Invaluable to any city they make define an area of town where neighborhood folks meet and call home and chances are they may have been one of your first bars you entered when you were legal or maybe even before you turned 21. Their mainstay is the regulars.
They won’t be known as trendy and are usually inconspicuous off the beaten path. But I bet you have heard of them or know about where they are located. Pull into Germantown, Highlands, Old Louisville, Butchertown, Downtown and you’ll find many.
Most have cramped spaces with a band in a small corner, dimly lit with neon signs galore, sassy bartenders, a defining core of patrons and the bathrooms – we’ll leave that to your imagination.
While many will argue their favorite watering hole is left off this list that’s what’s great about this category it will surely strike up a conversation and maybe a bar fight as well.
BAMBI BAR – (Highlands) a true Louisville icon. The “unofficial” start of the iconic Bambi walk. Some Fall City beer on tap to wash down the wings, greasy burgers and cheese balls. Hey, it’s what it’s known for and the pitchers of Amber Bock as well.
2701 Bardstown Road
MAGNOLIA BAR GRILL – (Old Louisville) Just call it the Mag Bar like the neighborhood youth do. You can’t miss the large neon sign out front either. Shoot some pool and listen to maybe the best juke box in town as well as local bands and trivia night in the back room. Every night is different. Known for the strongest and cheapest drinks in town.
1398 S. 2nd St.
SEIDENFADENS – (Germantown) Known for cheap beer prices and some of the greatest dance parties in the city. Hipsters love this place. Don’t forget Horror Movie Night on Sundays hosted by the Louisville Gore Club. Maybe try bringing your favorite dish for pot luck on Top Chef Wednesdays.
1134 E. Breckinridge St.
THIRD STREET DIVE – (Downtown) Don’t blink or you might miss the black awning out front with the bar name in white lettering. The name says it all for this true dive bar. Chalkboard covered walls outline a dark and cave like atmosphere, along with dollar pool tables and pinball machines. Cheap drinks and punk rock bands are highlights.
442 S. Third St.
NACH BAR – (Germantown) Quickly gaining popularity among the hipster crowd this dive bar is well off the beaten path. Shotgun row houses just like the bar itself surround this simply laid out spot. Oh and if your dog behaves they are welcome too inside or on the patio. Mellow sort of place with great craft beers too. Don’t forget the free juke box on Mondays.
969 Charles St.
THE BACK DOOR – (Tyler Park) So this might be one of the better dive bars with better food consisting of wings, burgers and sandwiches and ultimate nachos. They have a killer Long Island Tea too. Six pool tables host weekly tournaments along with dart boards and foosball tables and pinball machines. Walls are covered with local hand painted portraits providing the ambiance to do a lot of people watching.
1250 Bardstown Road.
G’s LOUNGE – (Middletown) What a dive bar in the East End? You bet. A true local favorite with great pub pizza while Texas Hold’ Em tournaments are going on or a dart game. Lots of sports on the tube as well. More of a pub feel, but regulars call it home.
10432 Shelbyville Rd.