St. Louis has many claims to fame, from being the jumping-off point of the famed Lewis and Clark expedition to blues music, barbecue, and the Anheuser- Busch beer dynasty.
Today this large Missouri metropolis honors its rich history and culture with iconic landmarks, blues clubs, barbecue joints, and a lively nightlife scene.
You can spend the day on a foot paddle boat along the Mississippi river admiring the Gateway Arch framing the St. Louis Skyline.
At night, you can explore St. Louis’ diverse bars, many of which have live blues music.
Read on to explore my list of the best bars in St. Louis to enjoy craft cocktails in style for an entertaining evening or a late night out on the town.
3906 Laclede Ave, St. Louis, MO 63108
Narwhal’s Crafted is a nautically inspired modern cocktail bar with locations in Midtown and St. Charles.
They specialize in tropical and summery cocktails and frozen beverages to enjoy in a polished modern bar space with a pet-friendly outdoor patio.
They even have frozen pup cups for your furry friends while you enjoy a frozen cup of your own.
Narwhal’s Crafted has an extensive cocktail menu divided into signature tropical cocktails, classic cocktails, draft cocktails, draft beer, and house shots.
The house shots are dangerously delicious. I had the Banana Split with Banana Dave Cruzan banana rum, coconut rum, and grenadine.
601 Clark Ave, St. Louis, MO 63102
If you’re a Cardinals fan, you’ll want to visit Ballpark Village, a massive complex with sports bars, pubs, and entertainment venues directly in front of Busch Stadium.
You can take your pick of bars and eateries within Ballpark Village as a one-stop shop for pre-or post-game entertainment.
There are eight different bars inside Ballpark Village that run the spectrum from sports bars to retro surf bars. I recommend going bar hopping to get the full experience.
You can start with a beer at Budweiser Brew House, then some tasty barbecue at Salt and Smoke, finishing the night with a dance party at Tengo Sed.
736 S Broadway St, St. Louis, MO 63102
Broadway Oyster Bar is where you need to go to get your live music fix.
A beloved downtown seafood restaurant, bar, and music club for over 35 years, Broadway Oyster bar features two live music acts every day for free, hosting bands from every genre.
Located inside a pre-Civil War building, Broadway Oyster Bar adds a lively personality while preserving its historic feel.
They offer a full menu of Southern-inspired seafood, sourcing fresh catches from the nearby gulf. Their full bar specializes in New Orleans-style cocktails along with a long list of local craft beers.
I wanted to experience a true New Orleans party and went with the SoCo Hurricane, with cranberry vodka, southern comfort, fruit juices, and grenadine.
1200 Russell Blvd, St. Louis, MO 63104
Described by National Geographic as one of the most authentic Irish pubs in America, John D. McGurk’s Irish Pub and Garden opened in 1978 in McKinley Heights as a one-room pub. over the past 40+ years, John D.
McGurk’s has expanded to a 20,000 square foot pub and outdoor garden with three outdoor bars of its own.
You could come for the outdoor scenery alone, but their authentic Irish food, beverages, and live music deliver a quintessential St. Louis experience for all ages.
I had to go the traditional route and order a pint of Guinness and a plate of beer-battered cod with Irish crisps and house-made tartar sauce.
618 S 7th St, St. Louis, MO 63102
Giving Ballpark Village a run for its money, Paddy O’s is an iconic sports bar located on the opposite side of Busch stadium.
They’ve been a staple sports bar since 1998, expanding with each year to larger indoor and outdoor spaces.
They have an impressive collection of signed Cardinal jerseys and memorabilia that will impress any fan.
You can come watch the game in one of Paddy O’s many dining and drinking spaces and stay for the post-game party, win or lose.
They have various full cocktail and beer bars along with a decadent menu of American pub fare. In true game-day fashion, I recommend a beer and a bratwurst.
They’re cheaper and infinitely better than what you’d get inside the stadium.
6191 Delmar Blvd, St. Louis, MO 63112
Owned by local Joe Edwards, Pin-Up Bowl is a family bowling alley by day and adult-only booze n bowl by night.
Located in the Delmar Loop, Pin-Up Bowl is a modern playground for kids and adults with a full food and cocktail menu.
They’re a highly sought-after private party venue and consistently sell out on night bowling lanes, so I recommend reserving a lane before you go.
You can bowl and drink from 9 pm to 3 am. Pin-Up Bowl is the poshest bowling alley you’ve ever set foot in, with hip décor and expertly crafted cocktails.
I went for their classy Not Your Father’s Manhattan with 30-day-aged bourbon, sweet vermouth, bitters, and cherry brandy.
1000 Spruce St, St. Louis, MO 63102
Another adult playground in the heart of downtown St. Louis, Start Bar is a trendy and lively cocktail bar, pizzeria, and old-school arcade.
The arcade has classic arcade games like skeeball, old-school video games, and foosball, along with a rotating selection of games.
In addition to arcade games, Start Bar has a full schedule of fun, artsy events, from art exhibitions to anime movie nights.
What’s better than pizza and arcade games? The answer is pizza, arcade games, and cocktails. I loved their BBQ Chicken pizza with smoky BBQ sauce, grilled chicken, and red onions.
It helped soak up an Always Sunny tequila cocktail with Grand Marnier, pineapple, and lime juice.
1009 Olive St, St. Louis, MO 63101
Thaxton Speakeasy is a stunning cocktail lounge in an authentic 1920s art deco building in downtown St. Louis.
Of course, you wouldn’t know by looking at it from the outside, a shabby brick awning with a sketchy bulb illuminating a decrepit sign.
Stumbling into Thaxton Speakeasy is a life-changing experience that you’ll be raving about for years to come.
You have to check to see if it’s open as it’s constantly rented for private parties and weddings. The cocktail menu is as elegant as the space.
I had their Josephine Baker featuring gin, Campari, sweet vermouth, and Giffard banana liqueur.
1 S Broadway St, St. Louis, MO 63102
Named for the panoramic, bird’s-eye view of downtown St. Louis, Three Sixty is a refined sports bar on the rooftop of the Hilton St. Louis in the Ballpark Village complex.
The giant 6000 square-foot space has both indoor seating surrounded by floor-to-ceiling windows and outdoor patio seating for al fresco drinks.
Featured as one of the best rooftop bars in the world from Thrillist, Premier Traveler, and Wine Enthusiast, Three Sixty has a great cocktail, wine, and food menu to match its spectacular view.
I wanted wine and cocktails, so I chose a drink that combined the two with the Catalina Wine Cooler.
1000 Clark Ave, St. Louis, MO 63102
Tin Roof is a downtown St. Louis music and social club that’s a favorite for artists and fans alike. Its festive atmosphere is a fun venue for musicians to play a show and then stay for drinks and socialize afterward.
There’s live music and DJ sets every night, along with gourmet takes on classic bar fare for lunch and dinner.
They have specials for every day of the week, whether you want bottomless mimosas and bloody mary pitchers for weekend brunch or two-dollar PBRs on Wednesdays.
I went for Taco Tuesday to get a tasty taco and a four-dollar margarita.
With locations in Grove and Midtown, Urban Chestnut Brewing Company is a brewery, beer garden, and gastropub that combines New Word atmospheres with Old World brewing techniques.
Brewmaster Florian Kuplent started his apprenticeship in a German brewery and has since used his expertise in Bavarian beer brewing to deliver award-winning varieties at both UCBC locations.
The Grove location is a large indoor pub with a full kitchen, while the Midtown location is a massive outdoor beer garden with light pub fare.
Both locations offer nearly 20 different varieties of house-brewed beers. My favorite was the fruity, juicy Hallertau Haze IPA.
239 N Euclid Ave, St. Louis, MO 63108
Pagan Wine Bar is a treasured neighborhood wine bar with a spookily classy atmosphere in Central West End, a block from Forest Park.
Written up as “the bar you wish was in your neighborhood” by the Riverfront Times, Pagan Wine bar is always packed.
The interior has a dimly lit old-school bar with Victorian-style furniture, antique light fixtures with red and black lightbulbs, and a collection of skulls lining the walls.
210 N Euclid Ave, St. Louis, MO 63108
Lazy Tiger is a chic, modern cocktail bar in a beautifully designed space in Central West End.
The décor combines mid-century modern furniture, Persian rugs, boho-chic light fixtures, and ceiling weaves.
The cocktail program, spearheaded by owner Tim Wiggins, is as eclectic as the interior design.
Along with a superb cocktail menu that combines tradition with experimentation, Lazy Tiger is also a multi-course dinner bistro.
They source all their spirits from artisanal small-batch operations.
If I could have tried every cocktail, I would have. The Crunchy Bunch pisco sour with agave spirit, grape soda, and lime was incredible.
1114 Olive St, St. Louis, MO 63101
Located downtown, blocks from Soldiers Memorial Military Museum, The Crack Fox is a gritty, alternative cocktail bar that you’re going to love.
The Crack Fox serves up incredibly creative concoctions made with fresh-pressed juices, house-made syrups, and the freshest herbs available.
They also host a wide variety of events like dance parties, drag shows, burlesque shows, karaoke, and even comedy shows.
There’s something for everyone here at the The Crack Fox, so be sure to pay them a visit!
405 N Euclid Ave, St. Louis, MO 63108
Up-Down is a national franchise of adult arcades with a 60+ tap beer selection and scratch-made pizza by the slice.
They have locations in multiple Midwestern states, including St. Louis’ Central West End.
Up-Down has an unbeatable line-up of arcade games from the 80s and 90s, along with countless pinball machines, Nintendo 64 gaming consoles, skeeball, and life-size board games.
The best part is that all games cost 25 cents. I went on Tuesday for discounted local draft beers to pair with a decadent Bacon Mac n Cheese pizza.