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How to Find the Best Local Bars

Whether you've moved to a new location or are hunting for the best bars for a weekend getaway, the mission to find best local bars can be a challenge. However, visiting bars is one of the best ways to socialise and get to know a new place, so it is no surprise that many of us search the web looking for the best bars in our area!

But, some easy steps can be helpful to follow when conducting this search. Below, we will detail the best ways to find the top bars in your area, which can be applied no matter where you are. 

Befriend a Bartender

Whilst this may sound random, trust us, this method works! If you have a favourite cocktail bar in your hometown, chances are that there is a bartender dedicated to serving those killer cocktails you love. 

Of course, the bartender in question will have a whole plethora of knowledge on alcohol, making them the perfect person to ask for bar recommendations. The best part of this is that you can trust their opinion, and many bartenders are well travelled or can connect you to another trusty source that has been to your destination and can offer you advice. 

Define your search by what you want

If you have arrived at your destination and it is too late to befriend someone you have a connection with, you will need to take your hunt to Google. Many of us rely on reviews and websites promoting the best bars, but these reviews aren't always the most reliable source to base your visits from. 

For example, you may go to a bar because of the extensive wine list, but someone else may go because they want to find a pool table and craft beers. Whichever is your preference, you should adjust your search to this. By adjusting your quest to be more specific, you will find results rated according to what you are looking for, allowing you to ignore the background noise of irrelevant reviews. 

You can use websites such as TripAdvisor to help you see the top-rated bars in the area, with their helpful listing system that takes you through each option. Here, you can add filters for different elements, such as bar snacks, or assess the food menu and see if you enjoy the options.

Social Media Communities 

Joining groups on social media can be the best way to find genuine reviews and opinions on bars in your area. For example, entering a Facebook group called "bars in Melbourne' should show you those in Melbourne with common interests. 

Joining these communities can also help you see more specific interests, whether they are for a wine bar or a cocktail bar. Finding those with common interests can also spark friendships and connections, which can lead you to find more bars. 

Research Local Specialities 

Every area will have a specialty in some form, and getting to know this can help you find the best bars that serve it! For example, we all know that wine is the most popular drink in Australia, but specific places will have specialties for you to consider. 

If wine is the way to your heart, look for the best wine bar in the area with an extensive range of local and imported wines, natural wines, and minimal intervention wines on the wine list. On the other hand, cocktail bars should provide classic cocktails and a mix of specialties. 

666 Vodka is one of the best locally crafted spirits. Using local spirits such as this vodka will make a cocktail list more authentic and take a venue from just a bar to an experience. The best place to drink this vodka is in the top bars in Melbourne, such as Chuckle Park bar, specifically in their espresso martini. Chuckle Park Bar is a charming, atmospheric bar that creates a similar vibe to a rooftop bar due to its floral outdoor beer garden setup, fairy lights, and seasonal cocktails. 

Attend Tasting Sessions

If you go to bars to enjoy the drinks list, attending tasting sessions can be a fun way to introduce yourself to new people whilst also finding the alcohol that you want. For example, many wine bars may have a sample menu or wine-tasting events for which you can sign up or walk in. 

Alternatively, if you are interested in the world of local beers or craft beer, you could attend a brewery and get to know the most popular beers in your area. From here, you can ask those hosting and attending the event about their beer and bar recommendations. This is one of the best ways to communicate with new people whilst getting a better idea of the local drinking scene. 

Visit your Neighbourhood Bar

Although your local bar on the corner of the street may not be the best in your area, you can get to know your neighbors and ask them for recommendations. Then, similarly to our first point of asking your favorite bartender's advice, you can get talking to the staff and those who know the area better to figure out the best options in your new location. 

When you get talking to your neighbors, don't be afraid to ask for recommendations on the delicious food in your area to gain more insight into other interests you may have. 

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Frequently asked questions

    • Is there an app to find bars?
      Although it is more traditional to use a search engine to find the top bars in your area, bar apps are becoming more popular with mobile phone users. Popular apps are TAABS and Drink Advisor, which show the best bars and drinking venues in the area you choose.
    • What is a secret bar called?
      A secret bar, also known as a speakeasy, is designed to mimic hidden bars from the prohibition era of the 1920s. These bars are popular because of their creativity and are often visited for the experience rather than the drinks.
    • How can I save money at a bar?
      One of the easiest ways to save money when visiting bars is by going during happy hour. Any good cocktail bar will offer happy hour, in which the customer will receive two cocktails for the price of one or at a discounted rate.

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