Fun Places to Get a Drink in Salt Lake City

Many people think about Utah and associate it with Latter Day Saints since it’s the number one state with the most Mormons.

different cocktails mix at salt lake city bars

Because of this, going out to drink might not be what you expect to do there.

But just like most big cities across the country, Salt Lake City, Utah, has a ton to offer when it comes to fun, exciting, and welcoming bars.

Whether you like dive bars, sports bars, cocktail bars, or just a good old fashioned bar – Salt Lake City has got you covered.

Check out the best bars in Salt Lake City below!

White Horse Spirits & Kitchen

325 S Main St, Salt Lake City, UT 84111
Phone: 801-363-0137
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White Horse Spirits & Kitchen is a chilled-out, American- and French-inspired bar and restaurant with brick walls and a cozy yet classy atmosphere.

I love going to White Horse — which is downtown near Washington Square Park — for creative cocktails like the “Oyster Shooter” and “Eye Opener.”

I often assume that bars will only have your classic bar bites (think: wings and nachos).

But at White Horse, this couldn’t be far from the truth.

White Horse has tasty, locally-sourced meals.

You can get wagyu beef, french onion soup, and brussel sprouts.


155 E 200 S, Salt Lake City, UT 84111
Phone: 801-355-2287
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Bar-X is another cozy cocktail bar centrally located in the downtown area off State St.

I love that it has an intimate, speakeasy vibe with dim lighting and low-level background music.

Bar-X focuses much more on the cocktails, beer, and wine than the food.

But they still have some good food options as well, such as chicken and apple sausage with chimichurri cheese.

The intimate atmosphere, craft cocktails, and tasty bites make it a great place for date night.

They have standard mixed drinks like whiskey sour and negroni.

But I like ordering off-menu because the bartenders at bar-X are experts at their craft.

Beerhive Pub

128 S Main St, Salt Lake City, UT 84101
Phone: 801-364-4268

Beerhive Pub is one of the best bars in Salt Lake City due to its’ retro yet sophisticated decor, welcoming pub vibes, and a long laundry list of delicious craft beer.

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It’s also right downtown near the Salt Palace Convention Center.

There isn’t a common type of beer you can’t get here, so you can take your pick of porters, sprouts, IPAs, Belgian beers, Scottish beers, ambers, barleywine ales, pale ales, and more.

I’m a huge IPA fan, and their Bewilder-Sesh IPA was incredible.

The bartenders are friendly and knowledgeable, which is helpful if you tend to have trouble choosing between a long list of options.

I also appreciate the bar games like pool table and foosball that become that much more entertaining after a few cold ones.

Bout Time Pub & Grub

Multiple locations
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Bout Time Pub & Grub is a chain bar with multiple locations throughout Utah, but the one in Salt Lake City is on Rio Grande St near Pioneer Park.

I appreciate Bout Time for its casual, easygoing feel and classic American bar bites.

It’s where you go when craving nachos, wings, bacon cheese fries, and other heavy, greasy, and tasty bar eats. They have great burgers too!

However, Bout Time’s drinks are my favorite thing to get here.

You have a choice of beers, cocktails, and shots. But I especially admire their separate section of mules.

For example, you can get a Tennessee Mule with Jack Daniel’s Whiskey, a Raspberry mule with raspberry vodka, or a Mexican mule with tequila.

Garage on Beck

1199 Beck St, Salt Lake City, UT 84103
Phone: 801-521-3904
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Garage on Beck is appropriately named, as it is quite literally an auto repair garage converted to a bar located on Beck St in the Capitol Hill area.

I love both the indoor and outdoor seating here.

Sitting indoors, I get the unique feeling that comes with sitting in what used to be a repair shop; sitting on the patio, I get more of the laid-back vibe that the bar is known for.

Garage on Beck is more of a roadhouse to me than just a bar because they have great beer and even better comfort food.

You can’t miss the chicken and waffles or the pot pie!

Plus, they have live music, which adds the perfect final touch to the excellent atmosphere.


326 S W Temple St, Salt Lake City, UT 84101
Phone: 801-819-7565
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Gracie’s is another Salt Lake City bar with live music and concerts, mostly on the weekends but sometimes during the week.

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It’s a gastropub in the center of downtown, so it’s no surprise that it can get quite busy, but that adds to the fun and exciting atmosphere, in my opinion.

They have all the classic liquors you could hope for — vodka, gin, tequila, rum, whiskey, etc. — as well as crisp draft beer, Japanese whiskey, and skinny cocktails.

If you want to avoid the crowds and not pay a cover charge, get there early!

Lake Effect

155 W 200 S, Salt Lake City, UT 84101
Phone: 801-532-2068
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Lake Effect is another central downtown bar near the Rocky Mountain Power Plaza.

They play live music as well, but in a much more intimate and elegant setting than Gracies or Garage on Beck, making it a fantastic spot for a date night.

This cocktail bar has live music almost, if not every night, but I love their jazz nights the most.

Perhaps it’s because it’s held in what they call the “Rabbit Hole,” which is an even more intimate space in the bar’s basement.

I’m also a huge fan of tapas, so going here for small plates of cauliflower, tin can nachos, lamb ribs, and fried pickles is my type of dinner.

Piper Down Pub

1492 S State St, Salt Lake City, UT 84115
Phone: 801-468-1492
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Piper Down Pub is a bustling, energetic Irish-inspired pub that’s fun for many occasions.

Located on State St south of downtown, near the Ballpark, Piper Down is an excellent spot to hang out with a group of friends and have a splendid time.

You can have fun birthdays here, go for St. Patrick’s day, or have fun on bingo night.

But I especially love visiting Piper Down for brunch because they have cheap mimosas, bloody mary’s, and delicious scotch eggs.

Quarters Arcade Bar – Downtown

5 E 400 S, Salt Lake City, UT 84111
Phone: 801-477-7047
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There are two Quarters Arcade Bars in Salt Lake, but my favorite is the one downtown near Washington Square Park.

This lively, cheerful spot is the perfect place to go when you’re feeling your competitive side coming out.

You can meet up with friends and have some friendly competition over pinball, skeeball, board games, and retro video games like Pac-man.

It feels nostalgic being there, especially playing Mario kart on their n64!

However, I wasn’t drinking draft beers and funky cocktails when I was playing Mario kart as a kid, but that’s what you get to do at Quarters.

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Sugar House Pub

1994 1100 E, Salt Lake City, UT 84106
Phone: 801-413-2857

Sugar House Pub is another bar with games, although this one is not downtown; It’s in the Sugar House area near Sugar House Park

I like going here for slightly more hands-on games like foosball, darts, and pool.

I also enjoy the atmosphere here, which is more low-key than many of the downtown bars.

The crowd is smaller, which means the parking is easier and service is usually a bit faster too.

I don’t usually eat anything here; rather, I enjoy classic beers, wines, and basic mixed drinks.

Essentially, Sugar House Pub is a very standard bar, and that’s exactly what you need sometimes.

The Green Pig Pub

31 E 400 S, Salt Lake City, UT 84111
Phone: 801-532-7441
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If you’re wondering where the best and busiest sports bar is to watch your favorite game on several TVs at once, The Green Pig Pub is your best bet.

This pub, neighboring the aforementioned Quarters Arcade near Washington Square Park, has a super fun and lively environment.

In addition to watching sports, you can grab your friends and play trivia on trivia night or boogie down when they have live music.

The Red Door

57 W 200 S #102, Salt Lake City, UT 84101
Phone: 801-363-6030
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Near the Capitol Theatre in downtown Salt Lake, you’ll find The Red Door, a ritzy yet comfortable and modern martini bar.

I’m not a huge fan of martinis myself, but I still love The Red Door because they have a supremely long cocktail list, so there are still loads to choose from.

I usually get a negroni, but friends I’m with have enjoyed their lavender martini, pomegranate martini, and hilariously named “dirty girl scout martini.”

I also tend to go on Friday or Saturday nights because that’s when they have live music!

Tavernacle Social Club

50 W Broadway, Salt Lake City, UT 84101
Phone: 801-519-8900
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Piano bars are some of my favorite types of bars, so I was excited to find Tavernacle Social Club, a highly entertaining dueling piano, sing-a-long, and karaoke bar downtown, near SW Temple St.

It opened in 2002 and has been entertaining its guests to the fullest ever since.

This is a great spot to celebrate a birthday, go on a third or fourth date, or simply hang out with friends.

This bar has a nice selection of drinks and shareable foods like loaded fries and steak skewers

If you want lots of singing, screaming, and laughing during your night, don’t hesitate to check out Tavernacle.

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Written by Brian Nagele

Brian attended West Virginia University, then started his career in the IT industry before following his passion for marketing and hospitality. He has over 20 years experience in the restaurant and bar industry.

As a former restaurant owner, he knows about running a food business and loves to eat and enjoy cocktails on a regular basis. He constantly travels to new cities tasting and reviewing the most popular spots.

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