10 Best Scottsdale Bars: Craft Brews, Cocktail Lounges and Old-Fashioned Saloons
By Patricia Escarcega
Phoenix, Scottsdale, and Tucson Local Expert
Whether you’re in the mood to sip on a trendy cocktail or sample a local craft beer, the Scottsdale bar scene offers plentiful choices for thirsty patrons of all stripes.
For an authentic taste of Old Town Scottsdale, stop in at Pattie’s First Avenue Lounge for inexpensive drinks, no cover charge, and laid-back patio, perfect for enjoying long, leisurely moments in the heart of the city.
If you're a wine-lover, Scottsdale has plenty of places to imbibe in style. A good place for a date night is Kazimierz Wine Bar, which will make you feel as if you've been whisked to a charming European wine cafe.
Established in 1959, the family-owned Coach House Tavern is a classic neighborhood tavern that claims to be the oldest bar in Old Town. Settle into the patio or mosey up to the bar for good drinks in one of the city’s most relaxed and unpretentious spots.
If you're a lover of fine craft brews, the Scottsdale Beer Company has you covered. This local brewery has more than a dozen craft beers on tap, as well as a menu of delicious bar bites.
10 Pattie's First Avenue Lounge
Eminently laid-back during the day, this no-frills joint transforms into a lively club in the evenings. Locals flock here daily for inexpensive drinks, a comfy heated patio, pool tables, and of course, plenty of room to dance. DJs spin on Friday and Saturday nights, and Pattie's also functions as a favorite site for get-togethers and special events. The absence of a cover charge adds considerably to the appeal. Pattie's First Avenue Lodge is located in the heart of Old Town Scottsdale, convenient to the shops and attractions of downtown. Shuffleboard and table-tennis tournaments take place regularly. Crowds here on the weekends, so be brace yourself for lines at the bar. (480-990-0103)
9 5th and Wine
Simple food and great wine make for a winning combination at 5th and Wine, one of the most popular wine bars in downtown Scottsdale. The restaurant/wine bar features a 60-seat dining room (which fills up fast on the weekends), a comfy soft seating lounge area, bar area, and a tasting room that can accommodate up to 40 people. This is a great spot to gather a group of friends for a night of tasting in the heart of downtown. Come for the popular happy hour, which features gourmet appetizers and well drinks at great prices. Gather a crowd of wine-lovers for a tasting night they won't soon forget. (480-699-8001)
8 The Beverly
The Beverly, formerly known as Mabel's on Main, is an Old Town Scottsdale gem full of old-school glamour and sophistication. The exposed brick walls, mahogany wood bar, and leather booths lend a warm and intimate feel, while the busy mixologists behind the bar satisfy thirsty customers by knowing how to pour a stiff drink. The menu is full of creative, delicious cocktails. There is also a food menu full of comfort food favorites like mac and cheese, deviled eggs, gourmet sliders, and special treats like truffle fries and flatbreads. Happy hour happens every day from 4 pm to 7 pm. ((480) 889-5580)
7 Coach House
Established in 1959, this family-owned bar is one of the oldest nightlife venues in Scottsdale. The Coach House is a friendly neighborhood tavern located in Old Town Scottsdale, where locals and visitors mingle in an unpretentious spot known for its long history and Southwestern hospitality. Hang out on the patio, or lounge inside where football or baseball, depending on the season, is playing on the televisions. If you're looking for a quiet spot away from the glitz and expensive cocktails of Scottsdale's trendy club and bar scene, the Coach House tavern is the place to go. A great place to enjoy a beer and watch the game. ((480) 990-3433)
6 RnR Restaurant & Bar
Located in two-story, modernist-industrial building in the heart of Old Town Scottsdale, this stylish gastropub is a popular destination for breakfast, lunch, dinner and late night eats. There are 30-plus TVs so you can catch the game, or sit on the patio and enjoy some of the best people-watching in Old Town. The chefs at RnR have crafted a fun, innovative menu full of sharable small plates and modern takes on American comfort food. There is also a long menu of specialty cocktails, imported and domestic beers on tap, imported Italian coffee and a wine cellar filled with more than 1,8000 bottles. ((480) 945-3353)
5 Kazimierz World Wine Bar
Tucked away from the bustle of Scottsdale, this wine bar has a distinctly subterranean feel, thanks to subdued lighting, softly-playing jazz, and wine casks that line the walls. The decor is heavy on stained glass and stone, imbuing the spot with a sense of mystery. Select from a truly staggerring wine list -- over 1,500 varieties are available. Management has thoughtfully whittled the gargantuan list down to a top 50 list, and servers provide additional guidance if you're still overwhelmed. Nothing so mundane as a happy hour here; instead, you'll catch drink specials during the "early evening hours of joy." (480-946-3004)
4 Terroir Wine Pub
If wine bars rub you the wrong way, it's time to give it another go with a visit to the Terroir Wine Pub in Scottsdale. The first house rule is: leave snobbery at the door. The second house rule? Have fun. This friendly wine pub features an exciting wine list that changes every day, fun theme nights, and a happy hour that goes on all day. There is also a dog-friendly patio, and if you ride your bike to the pub, you are automatically rewarded with a discount on all glasses of wine. Game nights, open mic nights and tasting nights have made this a vibrant, community-oriented wine pub. (480-922-3470)
3 Second Story Liquor Bar
This story-themed restaurant and bar is a unique addition to the Old Town Scottsdale nightlife scene. The restaurant and bar serves up a fun menu full of creative fusion dishes with an Asian twist. From the "Intro" appetizer meu, try the inside out caprese, featuring a creamy burrata and charred and juicy cherry tomatoes topped with a balsamic reduction, parmesan tuile, and crispy basil. For your entree (or, as its known here, the main plot), try the roasted ratatouille, served with savory white beans and cabbage rolls. The bar side of the venue features a long list of well-balanced cocktails. The head bartender, "Whiskey Man" John Christie serves cocktails with a side of storytelling. ((480) 945-5555)
2 The Hangar Food and Spirits
The Hangar Food and Spirits is a laid-back sports bar and restaurant located near the Scottsdale Airpark in north Scottsdale. The bar has a dog-friendly patio and offers guests off-track betting. The food is a big draw here, with an eclectic menu of elevated bar eats and comfort food classics. House favorites include the spicy green mac and cheese, grilled Hangar wings, tacos, burgers and sizzling hot chicken and steak fajitas. The Hangar offers excellent daily specials, including half-price bottles of wine on Wine Wednesdays, $3 house margaritas on Tuesdays and Fridays, $4 Jack Daniels on Thursdays and $2 special shots on Saturdays. ((480) 951-8897)
1 Scottsdale Beer Company
The Scottsdale Beer Company is a local brewery with a huge selection of craft beers. The passionate in-house brewmasters always have something exciting fermenting, and more than a dozen beers on tap on any given tap. There is also a full bar and a menu of gourmet bar bites, including a delicious veggie burger, mouth-watering hot and salty pretzels, homemade mac 'n cheese and some of the best fried pickles in town. The bar hosts a popular happy hour Monday through Friday from 3 pm to 7 pm, where you can enjoy $1 off all in-house craft brews, well drinks, wine by the glass, and small bites. The ambiance is friendly and casually upscale, thanks in large part to the bar's sleek industrial decor and design. ((480) 219-1844)
About Patricia Escarcega
Patricia Escarcega has lived in the Arizona desert since she was a teenager. She works as a writer and editor in Phoenix with her four dogs and two cats. She received her MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Arizona and is working on a novel about growing up in the 1990s.
Read more about Patricia Escarcega here.