Columbus Bars: A Guide to the City’s Nightlife

There’s no doubt that Columbus, Ohio is a great spot for food and restaurants. But did you know this city is also filled with plenty of amazing bars to enjoy the nightlife?

group of friends drinking cocktails and enjoying their time at a bar in Columbus

I don’t know about you, but sometimes the only way to unwind after a long week is by grabbing a few drinks with friends. That’s why I’ve put together a list of my favorite bars in town so you can have a night out with friends.

Whether you’re looking for a dive bar, cocktail bar, or a spot with tons of fun events, there’s a bar for you on this list. I’ve also included some spots with great happy hour deals so you can save a bit of money too. Keep reading to learn more about nightlife in downtown Columbus!

Local Bar Short North

913 N High St, Columbus, OH 43201
Phone: (614) 824-2728

Local Bar Short North
Source: Local Bar Short North

Looking for a casual, laid-back bar in Columbus? Local Bar Short North should work great for you. This neighborhood bar features a relaxed atmosphere perfect for unwinding. With karaoke, music, and happy hour deals, there’s so much to enjoy here.

You’ll find plenty of drinks, of course, as well as free popcorn at this spot. People love that the prices are affordable here. Be sure to stop by for happy hour to get great discounts on drinks and more!

Dick’s Den

2417 N High St, Columbus, OH 43202
Phone: (614) 268-9573
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Dick's Den
Source: Dick’s Den

If you’re a music lover, head over to Dick’s Den for your next night out. This laid-back spot offers bluegrass and jazz music on a nightly basis. Plus, you’ll find a jukebox as well as live artists from the area and around the country.

The drinks at this bar are super affordable, according to reviewers, so this is also perfect for when you don’t want to spend too much. Make sure to swing by during happy hour and check the calendar on their website for live music events!

Bob’s Bar

4961 N High St, Columbus, OH 43214
Phone: (614) 888-9073

Bob's Bar
Source: Bob’s Bar

Hoping to visit a bar with a divey vibe? We suggest Bob’s Bar. This neighborhood bar features a lively and inviting atmosphere. With hundreds of beer options and pool tables, you’re bound to enjoy yourself here.

Choose between bottles and beer on tap as well as mixed drinks at Bob’s Bar. People love the wide selection of beer as well as the friendly staff. Be sure to play some darts or pool to really relax!

Tree Bar

919 McMillen Ave, Columbus, OH 43212
Phone: (614) 725-0955
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Tree Bar
Source: Tree Bar

For a bar that’s a little more eccentric, make sure to check out Tree Bar. This Columbus tavern features a funky and casual interior that’s perfect for a night out with friends. With indie musicians, pool tables, and other fun events, you can count on have a great night.

There’s plenty of craft beer at Tree Bar, so if trying new drafts is your thing, you’ll definitely love it here. People love that this bar features new musicians and an open mic night from time to time!

The Walrus

143 E Main St, Columbus, OH 43215
Phone: (614) 817-1710
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The Walrus
Source: The Walrus

If you’re looking for a bar with food just as good as the drinks, swing by The Walrus. This place serves delicious burgers and pub food. You’ll also find craft beer and live music, of course.

When it comes to the burgers, we recommend the maple burger, chili and queso burger, big rig, or short rib sliders. They also have a ton of wine and cocktails to enjoy. Make sure to stop by for weekend brunch sometime!

Short North Pint House

780 N High St, Columbus, OH 43201
Phone: (614) 429-3986
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Short North Pint House
Source: Short North Pint House

Though some of the other bars on this list have an impressive amount of beer, if you’re a beer lover, Short North Pint House is the perfect place to be. This spot is actually a beer garden and serves American bar food.

The menu at Short North Pint House features plenty of drafts, bottles, cans, cocktails, and more. So, no matter what your preferred drink is, you’ll find something here. And if you’re hungry, grab a pizza, sandwich, or shareable plate!


954 N High St, Columbus, OH 43201
Phone: (614) 732-4660
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Source: Mouton

Looking for a classy spot for some drinks in Columbus? MOUTON is the answer to your prayers. This spot is a neighborhood cocktail bar featuring sophisticated cocktails, beer, and upscale snacks. With local art lining the walls, you’ll be able to get an idea for the community, too.

MOUTON offers a variety of cocktails, so you’ll be able to find something suited to your taste. Try out the social animal, the golden year, everyday superhero, or rose gold. They also have classic cocktails if you’re hoping to stick to the basics. Don’t forget happy hour from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday through Friday!

122 E Main St, Columbus, OH 43215
Phone: (614) 228-9041
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Sidebar Columbus
Source: Sidebar Columbus

Another more refined spot is Sidebar Columbus. Serving wine and cocktails alongside small plates with Mediterranean and South American influences, this spot is a tapas bar. And with a 4.7-star rating on Google, it’s clear people like it.

The wine and cocktail selection at Sidebar Columbus is pretty extensive, so you might want to try a few different options. Be sure to order something from the tapas menu and stop by for happy hour from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday!


463 N High St, Columbus, OH 43215
Phone: (614) 984-7351
Visit Website

Source: Denmark

Completing our list of bars in Columbus is DENMARK. You’ll find handcrafted cocktails as well as European-influenced bites at this bar. With a chic and inviting atmosphere, you may never want to leave.

The menu changes frequently at DENMARK, so make sure to check out the sample menu on their website for an idea of what they have to offer. You’ll also always have something new to try here. Be sure to visit for happy hour from 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. every day of the week!

So, the next time you’re in the mood for a drink with some friends, you’ll know exactly where to go in Columbus. With bars for every occasion, mood, and preference, you can use this list as a road map.

Want to get a drink outside with a view? Check out the rooftop bars scene in Columbus with our list here.

Not looking to have a night out in Columbus? Click here to see our top steakhouses in the area.

Which bar will you go to first? Let us know! Did we leave a restaurant out of this list? Make sure you drop us a line and we’ll check it out!

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Written by Kyle Green

Kyle lives never passes up the opportunity to try a new restaurant. As a former New Yorker of 7 years, he enjoys regular trips to NYC to visit friends and enjoys all the restaurants and activities the city have to offer. He also spends time on the road tasting and reviewing other restaurant scenes around the country.