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Space Coast's 10 Best Bars: Cool Off with a Cold One



The Space Coast in Florida knows how to relax, which is why it's such a great place to visit and why it has such a proud list of excellent bars.
 
Here are our favorite 10 places to sip a cold one. Whether you're a beer snob, a wine lover, a whiskey drinker or looking for a beachy, fruity cocktail, you can find whatever tickles your taste buds here. 
 
The Space Coast has an important place on the beep map, as home to a variety of respected craft breweries, including Florida's biggest brewery, Florida Beer Co. Peek behind the scenes during your next visit to Cape Canaveral and then pull up a bar stool and try a flight of beer in the new taproom. 
 
For the smaller craft beer experience, we also love the taprooms at the Playalinda Brewing Co. and the Intracoastal Brewing Co., ideally located right in the Eau Gallie Arts District. 
 
Coasters Pub & Biergarten has long been a local staple, too. In fact, it was one of the first places to find craft beer in Central Florida. 
 
You can find plenty of other quirky bars throughout the Space Coast, too. Listen to live jazz seven nights a week at Lou's Blues. Celebrate happy hour on the beach at Coconuts. Or relax in the whiskey bar at Mainstreet Pub in Melbourne. 


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Meg O'Malley's


Feeling a touch Blarney? This downtown Melbourne pub is as Irish as they come, from the St. Patty's pot pie down to the tall, cold glasses o' stout. The authentic menu boasts Irish classics, including corned beef and cabbage and bangers and mash. Or try your luck and ask about the Fisherman's Catch of the Day and the new Butcher's Cut of the Day. Great happy hour specials (starting as early as 3 p.m.) and frequent live entertainment are boons, as well. Snag $5 Car Bombs and Irish coffees all day, every day. During football season, the pub is especially crowded on NFL Sundays and Mondays.

Recommended for Bars because: Meg's in Melbourne is arguably the Space Coast's favorite Irish pub.

Aimee's expert tip: Here, you can find six different ways to drink your Jameson, including our favorite, a Jameson and lemonade – served in a mason jar, of course.

Read more about Meg O'Malley's →


Fishlips Waterfront Bar & Grill


Enormous waterside bar features a great, covered party deck, tiki bar upstairs, sports bar, sun deck, an array of terrific martinis and an ever-popular Mimosa Brunch on Sundays. Live music every Friday, Saturday and Sunday night. This is the type of place you can stop by any time of the day and enjoy good times and a great view of the water, but things really seem to pick up the pace at night. On Mondays in the fall, for example, there's NFL football on the tube, as well as a pretty competitive Texas Hold 'em tournament. On Wednesdays, folks showcase their karaoke skills on the deck. The food here will pleasantly surprise you, too.

Recommended for Bars because: This huge waterside bar offers a variety of outdoor locations to indulge in your favorite beverage and Florida's sunshine.

Aimee's expert tip: Six words: all you can eat crab legs. Do it. Wash it down with Happy Hour drinks, which start early at 3 p.m.

Read more about Fishlips Waterfront Bar & Grill →




This bar in historic downtown Melbourne is three bars in one: a copper whiskey bar, a black-light lava bar with a deck overlooking downtown, and an outdoor tiki bar that specializes in frozen drinks. What makes this pub truly stand out is its fresh-squeezed cocktails. You won't find any sour mixers here – only fresh fruit squeezed to order. This not only means some of the most delicious cocktails, but also significantly healthier. Mainstreet Pub also offers has a full live music calendar and serves up a small menu of light munchies, like fish tacos and crab-stuffed mushrooms. Staff also offers wine pairing recommendations with your meal.

Recommended for Bars because: There's something for everyone here, from whiskey to cocktails, made with fresh-squeezed juice.

Aimee's expert tip: Go here for the cocktails or whiskey bar (depending on your preference) and the view of the strip, but don't expect fine dining.

Read more about Mainstreet Pub →


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Intracoastal Brewing Co.
Photo courtesy of Intracoastal Brewing Co.


The taproom for the Intracoastal Brewing Co. in the Eau Gallie Arts District is ideally located within walking distance of great shops and right at the end of the Indian River bridge. This craft beer company is known for its beachy vibe and top-notch brew. If you want to enjoy the Florida weather, snag a spot outside at a picnic table, or for the traditional brewery vibe, pull up to the bar. The menu here is always changing, so even regulars can try something new. Or opt for a flight of beer to sample a variety. This brewery offers more than beer, too. Here, you can find yoga classes, trivia competitions and more.

Recommended for Bars because: This popular brewery's taproom features beer on tap and outdoor seating to enjoy the Space Coast's warm weather.

Aimee's expert tip: This is a great place to hang out near the Eau Gallie Arts District.

Read more about Intracoastal Brewing Co. →


Sand Bar Sports Grill and Bar
Photo courtesy of Sand Bar Sports Grill and Bar


The Sand Bar Sports Grill in Cocoa Beach has sports mastered. Sip the signature drink, the Hurricane, and munch on fish tacos while watching sports on the 20 high-def TVs scattered throughout the bar. The bar – actually two, because Sand Bar has double bars – is subscribed to a variety of premium channels, so you can catch almost any major game here. If it's not streaming, just ask. Looking for a different kind of sport? Watch surf flicks on the TVs when sports aren't on. In between games, listen to live music. After you fill up in the full kitchen, go on a warm walk to the nearby park. Looking to cool off? Try a smoothie. Is your belly growling? Fill up and then some with Sand Bar's massive, five-pound burrito. It's not dinner; it's a dare.

Recommended for Bars because: This indoor-outdoor beach-side bar is right on Cocoa Beach and ideally located a quick walk from Ron Jon's Surf Shop.

Aimee's expert tip: If you can eat the massive, five-pound burrito, you can get your picture on the wall. Not that we are encouraging it.

Read more about Sand Bar Sports Grill and Bar →


Playalinda Brewing Co.
Photo courtesy of Playalinda Brewing Co.


This brewery in Titusville offers a unique atmosphere – it's located in an old hardware shop – with locally made craft beer right on tap. Prepare to be surprised with unique combos (like the margarita ale, made with local citrus, agave, honey and smoked peppers), enjoy limited-time seasonal beers or check out some of the most popular pours, like the Rocket Man Red Ale – the perfect name for a Space Coast beer). Even find Cask and Nitro pours on site. Playalinda Brewing Co. boasts a long line of beers on tap – 14 Playalinda styles – plus nine guest taps. Prices are low, the brewery is open seven days a week and the tasting room's 40-foot copper bar provides a hip and cozy atmosphere. Best of all, this brew pub is located near Playalinda Beach, one of the Space Coast's best beaches (ahem, there's a nudie stretch, too).

Recommended for Bars because: The Playalinda Brewing Co.'s tasting room is comfortable and boasts a wide selection of craft beers made right on site.

Aimee's expert tip: Order a flight of beers and try something new.

Read more about Playalinda Brewing Co. →


Coconuts
Photo courtesy of Stock photo


The younger crowd enjoys the good times served at Coconuts. From live music and world-famous bikini contests to breathtaking views of the Atlantic and great specials on specialty drinks, this oceanside bar is sure to rank high on your list. Stop by early and enjoy a fried shrimp platter, Bahamian lobster tails or even a flat iron steak. Afterward, it's off to the party deck, to enjoy the night's entertainment and mingle with friends old and new. Want to see for yourself how fun Coconuts is? Check out the live webcam on the bar's website, and prepare to get jealous!

Recommended for Bars because: You can't visit the Space Coast without sipping a drink on the party deck at Coconuts – a favorite tourist experience.

Aimee's expert tip: Whether you're a participant or a spectator, Coconuts' bikini contests are quite, uh, entertaining. We love Coconuts' late-night happy hour specials. Some of the best drink deals on the beach!

Read more about Coconuts →




Right on the beach just off A1A, you'll find this popular blues bar that rocks with live music seven nights a week. Here, not only will you find quite possibly the longest happy hour in existence (from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.), but also people-watching at its best. Lou's Blues is funky and full of character; beware of the "Special Dirty Bingo Wingo Menu," featuring drinks with the naughtiest of names. Before the bands start playing at 9:30 p.m., you can also often participate in (or laugh at) karaoke, and catch a decent dinner. The peel-and-eat shrimp are reasonably priced and the bacon blue cheese sliders are, well – talk about a naughty indulgence!

Recommended for Bars because: This blues bar has a great atmosphere, great drink specials and even great food.

Aimee's expert tip: Lou's Blues is right off the beach. Spend your evening on the sand and roll into the bar to end the night right.

Read more about Lou's Blues Upstairs →


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Cape Canaveral
Florida Beer Co.
Photo courtesy of Florida Beer Co.


If you've seen Duff Beer on "The Simpsons," you've got to visit the Florida Beer Co. in Cape Canaveral, on the Space Coast in Florida. This craft brewery is the producer of real-life Duff Beer. Florida Beer Co. is also the biggest craft brewery in the state of Florida. It's known as a leader in the craft beer industry and since it opened in 1997, it has put Brevard County on the beer map. The large Cape Canaveral facility opened in 2014, complete with a visitor center, shop and tap room. The Florida Brewing Co. is the fusion of several local breweries: the Indian River Brewery, Ybor City Brewing of Tampa, Key West Brewery of Key West and Miami Brewing of Miami. Beyond sitting and sipping, you can participate in beer Frisbee tournaments, trivia nights, beer and food pairings and more.

Recommended for Bars because: The Florida Beer Co. is the largest craft brewery in the state of Florida.

Aimee's expert tip: Try the Unlabeled Stout and then take a stroll to Port Canaveral to watch cruise ships roll in.

Read more about Florida Beer Co. →


Coasters Pub & Biergarten
Photo courtesy of Coasters Sports Bar


Coasters Pub is a Space Coast staple. It first opened about 25 years ago as one of the first bars to offer a wide variety of beer. It was so popular, in fact, that Michael Jackson is said to have visited the bar. Back then, Coasters made history as one of the first brewpub systems in Central Florida, thereby helping spark the revolution of drinking carefully crafted beers instead of run-of-the-mill yellow stuff. Today, Coasters is a popular sports bar hangout, with 13 TVs and a variety of sports channels – all of the major packages. Coasters is the official "football watch party venue" for various college alumni, too. The menu here won't disappoint. Try the "famous chicken wings" or build your own burger. You can even score sirloin here, as well as unique gourmet craft soda.

Recommended for Bars because: Coasters is heaven for beer-drinkers. This local staple has led the way in the craft-beer trend.

Aimee's expert tip: Although Coasters is known for its good eye for beer, the gourmet craft sodas are also fun and unique.

Read more about Coasters Pub & Biergarten →


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Meet Aimee Heckel

Aimee Heckel’s passion for storytelling has brought her around the world as a journalist, writing award-winning articles about Haiti and Uganda. Aimee studied international journalism at the...  More About Aimee

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