Five Must Visit Bars in Austin
1. Red Room Lounge | 308A East 3rd Street
This basement bar may be somewhat rugged and industrial, but it’s also cozy and chic on the inside. The intimate cocktail lounge has comfortable leather couches and booths, paired with just the right shade of red mood lighting. Red Room Lounge not only has one of the finest selections of wine in the Austin area, but they also have numerous sommeliers that know everything there is to know about that wine. Friendly and warm, they will help you find just the right bottle for you, and there is a very wide inventory, both in price and flavor. Share a bottle among friends while snacking on the cheese platter, crab cakes, lobster rolls, and other gourmet appetizers.
2. Mug Shots | 407 East 7th Street
This (possibly haunted) downtown dive is everything that you could want for a casual hang. There are deals on drinks and food, and the bar has an amazing jukebox with a wide selection. If you prefer, you can belt out your own tunes on Open Mic Mondays. Aside from their supreme beer collection, Mug Shots is most notably known for their photo booth, so go and ahead create your own ‘Mug Shots Memories.’ Enjoy a drink out on the patio or play a game of pool inside – there’s tons of ways to entertain yourself at Mug Shots.
3. Firehouse Lounge | 605 Brazos Street
Firehouse Lounge & Hostel sits in what was once an Austin fire station. Though it has been converted into a modern cocktail bar, it still retains much of its historic charm and prominent speakeasy vibe. Also a hostel, the lounge is accessible from a hidden bookshelf entrance, located in the lobby. Guests and outside visitors can step back in time and enjoy Prohibition-era cocktails as well as jazz and blues musical performances. The menu is small, but offers big sandwiches and appetizers for those that are hungry. The best thing about Firehouse is that after a long night, you can rent a room and retire upstairs.
4. Moonshine Patio Bar + Grill | 303 Red River Street
Moonshine Patio is both a restaurant and a bar.You can enjoy nearly 20 brews of beer, 15 types of bourbon, 13 kinds of whiskey, 5 different scotches, and a variety of tequila, vodka, and gin, and of course, there’s moonshine; try different flavors from places such as Kentucky, North Carolina, Tennessee, and Texas. The bartenders are very knowledgeable and friendly, so don’t be afraid to ask for advice on making the right choice. As a restaurant, Moonshine is one step ahead. Instead of offering complimentary bread as a starter, they put delicious, buttery popcorn on the table. Try favorites like the corn dog shrimp, bread pudding, and beer-battered asparagus.
5. Handle Bar | 121 East 5th Street
The theme is mustaches, not bicycles, at this Texas establishment. If you don’t have a mustache, you can buy a handlebar style for $1 and put it on your glass or your face! The rooftop is decorated with twinkle lights and a few green plants and trees, creating an intimate ambiance. Both the upstairs and downstairs bars have fun games to keep patrons entertained. Downstairs, play a game of pool, darts, or on pinball machines. On the second floor, there’s a seesaw, rocking horses, corn hole, and giant Jenga. There’s also frequent DJ and live music performances so you sing and dance to your favorite hit songs. Stop by on Sundays for all-day Happy Hour.