Just as its name suggests, Congress Street Social Club has become a popular spot for those who want to meet and mingle. The always-bustling establishment, which is just a block away from City Market, has a large outdoor patio and bar, along with a bar on the ground level and another in the basement. Among Congress Street Social Club's interior accoutrements are pool tables, dartboards and an old-fashioned photo booth, which you may or may not want to take advantage of depending on how much photographic evidence you want of your night on the town. Drinks are reasonably priced, and the food menu is diverse and surprisingly good.
Recommended for Live Music because: Grab a drink, mingle and catch great music every weekend at Congress Street Social Club, a popular bar near City Market.
Amy's expert tip: Congress Street Social Club often hosts live bands. Check out the bar's website or Facebook page for a schedule of upcoming performances.
This country bar and dance hall, located on the west end of River Street in the Historic District, features a mechanical bull, scantily clad waitresses and perhaps the city's best selection of top-shelf bourbon. But the bar--the brainchild of Johnny Gosyne, co-owner of popular dance clubs The Crypt Pub and Club 51 Degrees--really shines as a venue for live country music and line dancing. The club regularly hosts line dancing nights, including free lessons for beginners, and has a great live lineup on weekends, when it welcomes performers from around the country. Add in unique special weekly events, like the popular Red Solo Cup night on Thursdays in which patrons can fill up their plastic cups for crazy low prices, and you've found one of the best places in town to throw down.
Recommended for Live Music because: River Street's popular bar Saddle Bags is the place to hear live country music. Several local, regional and national acts have graced the bar's stage.
Amy's expert tip: Try Saddle Bags' bourbon slush, a frozen concoction that will have you going back for more.
Located in the trendy Sandfly neighborhood near Isle of Hope, Driftaway Cafe serves up seafood in a cozy atmosphere that features a surprisingly lush landscape with a quaint stream. The restaurant boasts a great selection of appetizers, including a fantastic tuna tartare, an ahi seared tataki-style tuna with black and white sesame seeds, diced cucumbers, scallions and a cucumber wasabi cream sauce. Driftaway also offers a number of classic coastal dishes, including a seafood combo platter with flash fried butterflied shrimp and Gullah fried oysters, along with sandwiches, salads and entrees for meat eaters. The restaurant has a fully stocked bar and frequently has live entertainment on the weekends on its outdoor deck.
Always packed, always lively, always entertaining, Jazz'd is the place to be seen in Downtown Savannah. Located in the basement of the historic Kress building, this tapas-style restaurant has a long, sleek serpentine bar and ample seating in the bar area. The eclectic drink menu boasts more than 25 types of martinis, including the pineapple upside down cake, with vanilla rum, pineapple rum, pineapple juice and grenadine, and the plumsake tini, with plum sake, vodka, raspberry schnapps and a squeeze of lemon. Those who want a late-night bite to eat will have plenty to choose from on the tapas menu, from chorizo stuffed mushrooms to basil shrimp and grits. Live music Tuesday through Sunday rounds out the Jazz'd experience, making it one of the best places to spend an evening in Savannah.
Recommended for Live Music because: Jazz'd Tapas Bar has great food, but the live entertainment is the real treat at this hip restaurant/bar on Broughton Street.
Amy's expert tip: Jazz'd honors service industry workers every night. Bring a service industry ID or appropriate identification and get your first well, house or domestic drink for free.
This beloved open-air restaurant and bar, with a prime location on Tybee's North Beach, serves up a variety of creatively prepared, Caribbean-influenced dishes. Favorites include fish tacos, jerk chicken, sweet potato fries, crab cakes and conch fritters, while more traditional fare such as hot dogs and burgers are always available for less adventurous eaters. The North Beach Bar and Grill boasts great views of the ocean and the Tybee Lighthouse, features live music every weekend and periodically during the week, and offers a tasty selection of tropical beverages, making it the perfect spot for island-goers to stop for lunch, dinner or a late-night drink.
Recommended for Live Music because: Nothing beats listening to live music with waves crashing in the background. Tybee's North Beach Bar & Grill delivers, offering a great lineup every weekend.
Amy's expert tip: If you're environmentally conscious, then this is the Tybee restaurant for you. The North Beach Bar and Grill has made an effort to go green, using local, sustainable seafood, converting cooking oil into biodiesel, and recycling all of its cardboard, paper, aluminum, glass and plastic, among other efforts.
Occupying a prime spot in City Market, Wild Wing Cafe is a favorite place to catch live music and eat wings. Most of the sports bar and restaurant's live performances take place on the outdoor patio in City Market, meaning that even passersby can enjoy the music. Wild Wing's regular lineup includes local favorites such as Liquid Ginger, Jeff Beasley, Chuck Couretnay, and Bucky and Barry, along with visiting regional acts. Guests hoping to snag one of Wild Wing's coveted outdoor tables can choose from an extensive menu that includes an insane selection of wings, along with burgers, sandwiches, salads and more.
This dueling piano bar has been delighting locals and visitors since it opened its doors in 2000. Located just steps from River Street in Savannah's Historic District, Savannah Smiles is an all-request show in which four piano players duel it out for the audience's affection. The bar's talented musicians wow the audience with their ability to play everything, from jazz to rock to rap to country. In addition to the entertainment, guests can order beer, wine and cocktails from Savannah Smiles' full bar or food off the menu, which includes standard fare such as chicken fingers, fries, mozzarella sticks and jalapeno poppers.
Recommended for Live Music because: Savannah Smiles is a great choice for those who love piano music, crowd participation and a night of rollicking good fun.
Amy's expert tip: Plan to arrive early if you want a seat.
Don't be deterred by the name. The Tybee Island Social Club is not some sort of invite-only dinner society for the elite. This welcoming Tybee Island eatery, located mid-island on Butler Avenue, offers an array of creative, tasty bites. The restaurant is perhaps best known for its unique selection of tacos, which include the ever-popular duck tacos, with perfectly cooked duck, sliced radishes, apple allspice and tomatillo salsa. Those in need of a seafood fix will enjoy peel-and-eat shrimp, crab cakes and ceviche, while meat lovers will drool over the chorizo burger, which combines beef, chorizo and bacon. The creative drink menu boasts original cocktails such as the Scientist, a mind-blowing concoction featuring rosemary syrup, bluecoat gin, Chase elderflower liqueur and fresh lemon and lime juice. Be sure to check out the restaurant's fun weekly events, among them Tuesday night bingo and Thursday open mic night.
Recommended for Live Music because: One of Tybee Island Social Club's owners is a musician, so it goes without saying that this restaurant has a fantastic lineup of musical talent.
Amy's expert tip: Feeling charitable? Order the Phil, a cocktail featuring Crusoe organic spiced rum, peach schnapps, peach nectar and spices. Proceeds from drink sales benefit the Savannah Philharmonic Society.
Close enough to the Historic District to attract a downtown crowd but far enough away to guarantee that parking won't be a nightmare, the Wormhole is great music, a laid-back atmosphere and cheap beer. The performance venue hosts local and touring bands from a variety of genres under the general heading of alternative and has been a major supporter of the Savannah Stopover, a music festival held each spring for performers en route to Austin, Texas for SXSW. In addition to live music, the venue also hosts comedy shows, theatrical performances, art exhibits and fashion shows. The bar, which many laud for its authentic dive-like ambience, features a performance area, full bar, billiards tables, video games and dartboards.
Recommended for Live Music because: Hardcore music fans love the Wormhole, a dedicated live venue and bar that has hosted a number of local, regional and national acts.
Amy's expert tip: Visit the Wormhole's website and join the club's email list for exclusive discounts.
This Congress Street staple is the place to go for live music in Savannah. Raw, unpolished and unpretentious, the Jinx has hosted some of the hottest local and regional bands since it opened its doors in 2003. The Jinx boasts a friendly bar staff, laid-back atmosphere and daily happy hours from 4 to 8 p.m. The bar attracts a wide range of patrons, from tattooed hipsters to punk rock college students to tourists who just happened to wander in. A small patio out back is a good retreat for smokers, who, by law, are prohibited from smoking inside the city's bars.
Recommended for Live Music because: The Jinx is a sure bet for music fans, who have been flocking to this City Market bar/live music venue for the past decade.
Amy's expert tip: Don't miss local band Damon and the Shitkickers, a self-described outlaw country band, which regularly performs at the Jinx. Check out the band's schedule on their Facebook page to see which nights they're rocking out the Jinx.