Seattle boasts a wide variety of bars, from cozy little nooks to ritzy wine bars and trendy places to grab an equally trendy cocktail or drink. No matter your taste, you’ll find a bar worthy of trying out for a date or a night out with friends.
With locations in Seattle, Bellevue, and Woodinville, Purple Wine Bar and Café is a ritzier bar, known for the towering wine rack in its Seattle location (seriously, it’s huge: prepare to be dazzled in its presence). Purple is perfect for one of those special occasions where you’re ready to splurge a bit in exchange for a stellar meal and wine selection. Book a reservation if you want to be sure to get a table.
If you love gin, this Belltown bar is undoubtedly the place for you, as the menu features about 30 different kinds. The cocktails are amazing, whether you get a gin-based one or not, and there’s beer and wine for the non-spirit lovers in your group. The biggest appeal of Bathtub Gin Co. is its speakeasy aesthetic: The entryway is tucked into an alley, which might just make you feel like you’re actually ducking into a forbidden bar during the Prohibition era. The interior is small and cozy, so come early if you don’t want to wait in a line to get in.
Percy’s is an adorable gastropub and bar in Ballard that’s decked out in dark, warm wood, lots of live plants, and brick. If you come here to drink (which you should be if you looked up a list of bars), do yourself a favor and order a cocktail. Made by cocktail artisans, these creative drinks are concocted with herbs grown right onsite. The menu can be a little on the expensive side, but Percy’s has happy hour every day for deals. This place is also an excellent dinner spot, featuring a Southern food-inspired menu with plenty of fresh, local ingredients.
Located near plenty of other bars and places to eat in Capital Hill, Linda’s is the little dive you never knew you needed (or maybe you knew, in which case that’s okay, too). The décor is low-key; the food is unpretentious, delicious, and amazing for brunch; and the drinks are solid. On nicer days, you can take your drink outside and sit on the patio. Linda’s also holds a special place in the hearts of Kurt Cobain fans, as it was the last place he was seen alive.
If the Pine Box strikes you as a little bit of a macabre name, you’d be right. The bar is located in a former funeral home, which was built in 1923 and even held the funeral for Bruce Lee. There are traces of its past still lingering about—reclaimed oak coffin cabinets make up the bar, and there's a ceramic block that used to be part of the original urn storage. You won’t find ritzy fare here; instead, expect a great selection of beer and cider, plus a yummy menu featuring deliciousness like pizza with kimchi on it and a huge, amazing chocolate chip cookie.
Some Random Bar
This Belltown haunt is just a great, all-around bar: It has solid drinks, solid food, and solid service. And it’s a sweet place to watch a game, too. The menu features both seasonal and regular cocktails, beer, wine, and cider, as well as a menu that consists of elevated pub fare. Try the crab nachos, garlic pull-apart bread, or pork belly sliders for surefire hits.
Shorty’s is the place for you if you want a laid-back night filled with cold beer and games. They have a lineup of nostalgic pinball and arcade games, from Millipede to Pac-Man, as well as two vintage coin-op bowling machines. The food menu is simple (hot dogs, nachos, and a few sandwiches) and the drinks are likewise pretty straightforward. But you don't come here for trendy cocktails—you come here to annihilate your friends and dates at Galaga!
With its vibrant, circus theme, Unicorn is not for everyone—but if you’re looking for something different, this Capitol Hill bar is worthy of a night out. Upstairs, try a cocktail that includes quirky ingredients like fruit loop or bubblegum vodka (there are plenty of tamer flavors as well). All the drinks and food have circus-themed names, some of which are a little on the inappropriate side, so don't equate the circus theme as a kid-friendly place! You can also venture downstairs and play arcade games, or come for the Sunday brunch and drag show.