Expert Tips


Cincinnati's Nightlife Offers Creative Cocktails, Craft Breweries and Plenty of Fun

Cincinnati supplies a diverse offering of nightlife options, with something for everyone.

The city’s 19th-century German immigrants brought with them a beer-brewing heritage which remains today. Many local breweries offer taprooms. An excellent choice is MadTree Brewing which is known for their high quality beer.

The influence of nearby Kentucky Bourbon Country is felt in Cincinnati, especially on the Kentucky side of the Ohio River. Old Kentucky Bourbon Bar (OKBB) has an excellent Bourbon selection and knowledgeable bartenders.

Many Cincinnati bars are known for their creative cocktails, including The Famous Neons Unplugged, the Cocktail Terrace at 21c and 16-Bit Bar + Arcade.

Live music is found at Neons, Arnold’s, Mount Adams Pavilion, Fountain Square and Horseshoe Casino. 16-Bit has vintage video games. Horseshoe Casino offers slot machines and table games.

Ready to put on your dancing shoes and dance the night away? Try Mount Adams Pavilion. Fountain Square and Horseshoe Casino both offer salsa dancing nights.

Holy Grail is the perfect spot for sports fans wanting to catch Reds and Bengals fever.

Many establishments offer sublime outdoor spaces. Gorgeous city views can be found at the Cocktail Terrace at 21c, Mount Adams Pavilion and the Horseshoe Casino’s Terrace Rooftop Bar. Fountain Square is the city’s favorite outdoor venue. Neons has the largest enclosed patio, but you’ll also find outdoor patios at Arnold’s, MadTree, and OKBB. Holy Grail and 16-Bit both roll up the garage doors when the weather is nice.

Holy Grail Tavern & Grille
Photo courtesy of Terri Weeks


The Holy Grail is a locally-owned sports bar and grill that enthusiastically supports local sports teams. It is ideally situated at The Banks, across the street from Great American Ball Park and just a few blocks from Paul Brown Stadium and U.S....  Read More

Horseshoe Casino Cincinnati
Photo courtesy of Horseshoe Cincinnati


Horseshoe Casino is a popular downtown Cincinnati destination that has been open since 2013. The casino features nearly 2,000 slot machines, over 90 table games and a poker room--everything from penny machines to separate high limit rooms. In...  Read More

Old Kentucky Bourbon Bar
Photo courtesy of Stuart MacKenzie


Greater Cincinnati definitely feels the influence of Kentucky's Bourbon Country - just a two-hour drive away - especially in Cincinnati's Northern Kentucky suburbs. Old Kentucky Bourbon Bar, or OKBB, is located in the heart of Covington's...  Read More

Cocktail Terrace at 21c
Photo courtesy of 21c Museum Hotels


The Cocktail Terrace at 21c is a hidden gem in Cincinnati's nightlife scene. Perched atop the 21c Museum Hotel, it provides a bird's eye view of the city. Comfortable seating groupings provide a relaxing spot to enjoy a cocktail and...  Read More

MadTree Brewing Company
Photo courtesy of Terri Weeks


MadTree Brewing's Taproom is a popular hangout for beer connoisseurs. They offer 16 different beers on tap, many of which are small batches that aren't sold elsewhere. One tap is always reserved for soda such as cream soda or root beer. MadTree...  Read More

Mount Adams Pavilion
Photo courtesy of Terri Weeks


Looking for a drink with a view? Or how about a fun place to dance the night away? Mount Adams Pavilion has both. This popular nightclub is located in the heart of the lively Mount Adams nightlife scene. It is best known for the four outdoor...  Read More



Looking for free entertainment? Check out what's going on at Fountain Square. Surrounding the 1871 Tyler Davidson Fountain, the square is the heart of downtown Cincinnati. It features a music stage and a large high-definition LED board. A wide...  Read More

Arnold's Bar and Grill
Photo courtesy of Chris Breden


No list of the best nightlife in Cincinnati would be complete without Arnold's Bar and Grill. They've been in operation since 1861, so they know how to keep the customers coming back. Arnold's has an old-fashioned saloon ambience and serves food...  Read More

16-Bit Bar + Arcade
Photo courtesy of Terri Weeks


16-Bit Bar + Arcade offers something new to the Cincinnati nightlife scene: vintage arcade games. The games are free as long as you buy drinks (either alcoholic or non-alcoholic). The 5,000 square-foot facility has over 50 old-school video game...  Read More

The Famous Neons Unplugged
Photo courtesy of Terri Weeks


The Famous Neons Unplugged is located in Over-the-Rhine, a neighborhood with a thriving nightlife scene. One of the big draws is the outdoor patio which is enclosed by a brick wall that was constructed from reclaimed building materials. Ornate...  Read More


Meet Terri Weeks

Terri Weeks, a Cincinnati mother of three, is a former mechanical engineer who became a travel writer quite accidentally. She and a friend started intentionally exploring attractions around...  More About Terri