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The Best Places to Grab a Drink in Nashville

When scorching temperatures become a reality, Nashvillians seek out the most refreshing libations. For some, that means finding an air-conditioned oasis with icy craft cocktails. For others, the key to summertime salvation comes in the form of a shady patio with a margarita on the rocks. Nashville’s bar scene has you covered, whether you’re after a frozen cocktail or an ice-cold brewski. Grab a pal or—five—and head to one of these excellent establishments to beat the heat.

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Alice Shearon
9 Restaurants
Updated June 22, 2022
Restaurants:Henley, Skull's Rainbow Room, Earnest Bar & Hideaway
Price Range:$$ - $$$
Cuisines:Regional American (Southern), French / American, Contemporary American
Neighborhoods:Downtown, Nashville
A photo of Henley restaurant

Henley

$$$$
Regional American (Southern)
Downtown
4.4
993 reviews

Henley, nested in the Kimpton Aertson Hotel, takes the hotel bar game to a new level, attracting locals and out-of-towners for its excellent drinks—and Southern hospitality. The black-and-white tiled floor is paired with striking, large-scale artwork and yellow leather backed bar stools, mixing modern and traditional decor. The extensive craft cocktail menu has a spotlight on small-batch Tennessee bourbons. Sample the rotating seasonal punch or flag down a roving cart for tableside bespoke cocktails. Serving breakfast, brunch, lunch and dinner, there is truly never a bad time for a drink at Henley.


At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?

A photo of Skull's Rainbow Room restaurant

Skull's Rainbow Room

$$$$
French / American
Downtown
4.6
3353 reviews

The days of Prohibition may be long gone, but this former speakeasy is still going strong. Opened in 1948, Skull’s is set in historic Printer’s Alley. The subterranean space now boasts a vintage club ambience, with tin ceilings, low lighting, and heavy velvet curtains. The famous black-and-white stage—which has been graced by performers such as Johnny Cash and Patsy Cline—now hosts nightly live jazz, which shares the stage with lively burlesque shows on Fridays and Saturdays. Expertly mixed craft cocktails are the stars here; for a taste of the past, try the Oh Louisiana, an enticing mix of Cognac, mezcal, absinthe, and grapefruit.


At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?

A photo of Earnest Bar & Hideaway restaurant

Earnest Bar & Hideaway

$$$$
Contemporary American
Nashville
4.8
878 reviews

It’s no secret that author Ernest Hemingway was a legendary cocktail enthusiast. So it’s only fitting that he inspired this lair, located in a brick walled-expanse, dressed with tufted leather couches, vintage typewriters, and of course, stacks and stacks of books. On the menu, creative cocktails are treated to literary flourishes: Try the White Elephant, a refreshing gin drink described as, “A tart semi-sweet handshake.” Located in vibrant Wedgewood-Houston, it’s the perfect stop after an art crawl at the nearby galleries or a soccer game at GEODIS Park, located right around the corner.


At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?


Takeout available
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A photo of The Electric Jane restaurant

The Electric Jane

$$$$
American
The Gulch
4.4
273 reviews

Nashville’s nightlife scene continues to stretch its wings, and the addition of The Electric Jane is another example of that signature versatility. Though the dining and entertainment venue, which offers brunch, dinner, and late-night eats, opened in February, it’s quickly becoming one of Music City’s chicest hangouts. Art Deco-inspired interiors feature sleek velvet upholstery and marble countertops—the vision comes from Los Angeles hospitality veteran Jason Scoppa and Sam Bakhshandehpour; the former ran The Sayers Club, which hosted legendary performers such as Stevie Wonder and Prince. Expect loungey vibes with the opportunity for a globally-inspired dinner and drinks menu—fittingly, there’s a sizable martini list—in what’s become one of Nashville’s decidedly hippest bars.


At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?

A photo of Sinema restaurant

Sinema

$$$$
American
Nashville
4.7
3048 reviews

If you’re feeling glamorous, the swanky bar at Sinema is the ticket–and not just because it occupies a historic movie theater. The grand lobby is decked with a sweeping staircase to the second floor, where an Art Deco-esque bar channels Hollywood’s golden age. Beverage director and sommelier Brett Nelson crafted a cocktail program worthy of any A-lister, along with an excellent wine list and a selection of rare whiskeys. For a refreshing twist on a classic, try the Family Ties, with gin, lemon, and cucumber.


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Experiences available
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Takeout available
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A photo of Sonny's Patio Pub and Refuge restaurant

Sonny's Patio Pub and Refuge

$$$$
American
Germantown
4.5
99 reviews

Let your inner child out at this action-packed oasis. The spacious indoor bar opens onto a large outdoor patio with an assortment of games to play while enjoying a cold beverage. Built-in cabanas line the space, perfect for any fun-loving group, including your pup—Sonny’s is dog-friendly, only adding to the fun. The day drinking vibes are strong here: Try a margarita flight, with your choice of three, in flavors such as caramelized pineapple, peach, and pomegranate, or a power-packed frozen cocktail. Keep up your stamina with bites like flatbreads, burgers, and the show-stopping chili and cheese-topped tater tots.


At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?

A photo of City Tap House-Nashville restaurant

City Tap House-Nashville

$$$$
American
Nashville
4.3
669 reviews

As the name suggests, Philadelphia-born City Tap House has a prolific selection of beers—over 50 on draft, plus bottles and cans—wines, and cocktails. The rustic yet modern space, with concrete floors and exposed wooden beams, promises plenty of bar and table seating. Grab a bite while you sample one of the many brews. The menu skews towards classic American pub grub, which means burgers and wings make appearances. But so do poke bowls, steamed buns, and Korean short rib tacos. Don’t miss the lively happy hour, every Wednesday through Friday.


At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?

A photo of Honky Tonk - The Twelve Thirty Club restaurant

Honky Tonk - The Twelve Thirty Club

$$$$
American
Nashville
4.7
997 reviews

The Honky Tonk is a welcome refuge from the madness of Broadway. Though its street-level bar has plenty of live country music, a sophisticated cocktail scene—don’t miss the passion fruit habanero margarita—set it apart from Nashville’s more raucous bar scene. Opened by restaurant industry stalwart Sam Fox, the spot features a large wraparound bar where you can safely observe the hijinks of Broadway with a cold beer in hand. Table seating is available, as is an extensive bar food menu, making it an excellent place for large groups gearing up for a night on the town. To set the stage for an epic Nashville night, order a selection of large-format concoctions, ranging from the signature sangria to a Louisiana rum punch, for the table.


At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?

A photo of House of Cards restaurant

House of Cards

$$$$
American
Downtown
4.8
4035 reviews

Hidden beneath the Johnny Cash Museum in Printer’s Alley, House of Cards is an entertainment venue that combines magic tricks with a dinner show, guaranteed to knock your socks off. Dark wood paneling and dazzling chandeliers shuttle you to a different era while a strict dress code ensures you’ll only add to the glamor. Order the aptly named Houdini Martini, which skips the vermouth and comes clad with three speciality olives. And don’t leave without checking out the rare magic memorabilia that doubles as decor.


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