7 Can’t Miss Rustic and Retro Bars in Cincinnati

September 11, 2020
Food & Drink
jason wolfe

Casual, upscale bars in Cincinnati perfect for a night out

7 Can’t Miss Rustic and Retro Bars in Cincinnati

Cincinnati offers a number of retro and rustic bars to visit during your next night out. Whether you are in for something more classic and retro or for a relaxed hippy bar, Cincinnati has it all. Check out these upscale casual bars in Cincinnati that are perfect for your next date night or group get-together.

Need to buy a gift for a friend or family member? Consider getting them a GiftYa virtual gift card

GiftYa virtual gift cards can be taken anywhere you go and are completely customizable. The next time your friend goes out, they can use their new GiftYa card on almost any of these featured bars and restaurants. 

Sundry and Vice

Striking cocktail destination featuring inventive drinks and dishes

Grab a seat at the bar and try a cocktail. Image courtesy of Yelp

sundryandvice.com

18 W 13th St, Over-the-Rhine

Over the years, Sundry and Vice has earned numerous praise and accolades. In 2017, it was voted Cincinnati’s “Best Bar.” It has also been featured in USA Today, NY Daily News, Eater, and the New York Times. Part of its appeal is the turn-of-the-century apothecary-theme that runs throughout its decorations and drinks. 

Sundry and Vice is a unique and upscale bar located in Over-the-Rhine. This popular bar offers a number of enticing cocktail selections. The Crooked But Charismatic cocktail is filled with mezcal, aperol, cynar, and cucumber. Its flavors can be described as smoky and bright. Another popular cocktail called the Green Carnation featured gunpowder gin, chartreuse, and absinthe. Sundry and Vice also offers a rotating draft and beer list. 

“This small and yet robust cocktail bar, most definitely passed my vibe check. The music showed class, culture, and was perfect for keeping our conversation upbeat. The bartenders were inviting and really displayed their passion for their craft — not just in their demeanor but in their product.” - Yelp Review


Purchase a GiftYa card for Sundry and Vice. 

Lost & Found OTR

Craft cocktails, small plates, and more served in a vibrant and upbeat atmosphere

Unique and whimsical artwork decorate the walls of this popular bar. Image courtesy of Yelp

lostandfoundotr.com

22 E 14th St, Over-the-Rhine

Lost and Found OTR is an intimate and quirky cocktail bar housed in the Over-the-Rhine neighborhood. Adventurous cocktails, shareable plates, wine, and beer await you at this adored neighborhood bar. 

When it comes to choosing cocktails, you might find yourself stuck between two drinks. Each one of them sounds enticing and delicious! Whether you order the Keen Supreme cocktail or the Golden Hour, you are sure to find yourself pleased with your selection. Hungry? Try the Cubano Sandwich, which is filled with mojo pork, sliced ham, swiss cheese, and pickles. The Grilled Cheese and Gazpacho is also a hearty and delicious option. 

“We stopped for some patio drinks and didn't leave for a few hours. The guy who runs this was a class act and a true pleasure to talk with. The rest of the staff was very gracious and accommodating to us weary and weird travelers. The Cuban sandwich was truly next level. This bar made me want to move to Cincinnati.” - Yelp Review

16-Bit Bar + Arcade

Retro bar in Cincinnati offering delicious drinks and plates

Try one of the bar’s retro-themed cocktails. Image courtesy of Yelp.

16-bitbar.com/cincy 

1331 Walnut St, Over-the-Rhine

16-Bit Bar + Arcade is a popular destination for booze, games, and TV. Over 50 classic arcade games are offered at this unique bar. Whether you want to play Donkey Kong or Street Fighter, these popular games are offered to you for free with the purchase of a drink. 

The 16-Bit Bar + Arcade offers a wide selection of cocktails and drafts suitable to a diverse array of tastes. From the New Wave cocktails like the Carrie Fisher to the Old School drinks like the Patrick Swayze, there is no shortage of creative and delicious drinks served at this popular bar in the Over-the-Rhine neighborhood. 

“The drinks might be my favorite part of this bar. They have fun names and are extremely original - you will not find drinks like this anywhere else! Most of the drinks are paired with candy too! They're super delicious. All of the arcade games are free as long as you have bought a drink. There are so many options- you could spend hours upon hours in here.” - Yelp Review

Longfellow

Craft cocktails served in a casual bar with an exposed brick

Enjoy the gorgeous exposed brick as you sip on Longfellow’s craft cocktails. Image courtesy of Yelp

longfellowbar.com

1233 Clay St, Over-the-Rhine

Need to kick back and relax? Head to the Longfellow bar after a long day of work or during a Saturday night out. A small, but enticing food menu offers a number of delectable options like the Sloppy Casey and the Tomato Tartine. As for the drinks, you have a wide selection of beer, wine, and cocktails to choose from. Want to stay in for the night while also enjoying some of Longfellow’s popular drinks? Order a To-Go kit. The Spruce Goose, Cherry Lemonade, Sangria Grenada, and more are available for pick-up!

“They have an ever changing cocktail menu crafted with very unique ingredients along with some rare craft beers. It is a bit pricey, but on point due to said ingredients. My cocktail featured pineapple and soy among other things. They did not skimp on the alcohol.” - Yelp Review


Purchase a GiftYa card for Longfellow. 

Homemakers Bar

Retro bar featuring a friendly ambience in Over-the-Rhine

Homemakers Bar features a unique and retro atmosphere. Image courtesy of Yelp

homemakersbar.com

39 E 13th, Over-the-Rhine

Homemakers Bar distinguishes itself from other bars in Cincinnati through its unique mission and upbeat style. With its retro setting and vibrant atmosphere, the Homemakers Bar is perfect for a night out with friends or a first date. Everyone from the tastemakers to the adventurous are welcomed at the Homemakers bar with open arms. 

In addition to its fine selection of cocktails, beer, and wine, the Homemakers Bar also offers delicious sandwiches and picnic packs. Guests can choose from the Veggie Sandwich, BBQ Chicken Sandwich, or Italian Sub. All sandwiches are served with either potato salad or marinated chickpea salad. If you’re enjoying a special day out with friends, the picnic pack is also a suitable choice. Hummus dip, marinated chickpea salad, potato salad, and more are offered under this menu option. 

“This bar definitely deserves the five star rating its currently enjoying on Yelp. The ambiance is really fun, kind of a nostalgic call to everyone's parents/grandparents homes without being too "ironic." - Yelp Review

The Comet

Northside bar offering savory Mexican food in a casual atmosphere

Try the Hot Mess with grapefruit brulee. Image courtesy of Yelp

cometbar.com

4579 Hamilton Ave, Northside

Need a new dinner destination? On the hunt for a new brunch spot? Try the Comet Bar. This popular bar in the Northside of Cincinnati offers an enticing assortment of dishes and drinks. Out with friends? Share a plate of chips and guacamole with them! Craving a burrito? When you order one, you can choose your preference of beans, salsa, protein, and other fillings. Other menu items like the Quesadilla and Nachos let you customize your filling options. 

“The food was delicious and had very generous portions for what you paid for. The live band wasn't overly loud for the smallish space either. They also have a nice patio out back with about 6-8 tables as well if you like dining outside. I wished I had stumbled upon this place sooner!” - Yelp Review

Blind Lemon

Live music and delicious cocktails offered at whimsical bar

Live bands perform at the Blind Lemon on a regular basis. Image courtesy of Yelp

theblindlemon.com

936 Hatch St, Mt. Adams

For 60 years, The Blind Lemon has served as a top destination in Cincinnati for high-quality cocktails and live music. Everything from the Lemonhead Iced tea to the Malibu Wave is made with skill. The Blind Lemon also offers a fine selection of beer, wine, bourbon, and scotch. While live music is put on pause due to COVID, you will at least have something to look forward to once social distancing restrictions are lifted and it is safe to congregate in crowded areas again. 

“I LOVE BLIND LEMON! The outdoor space with fire pit, the eclectic interiors (there are copper mugs hanging from the ceiling), the cozy space and dim lighting, the live music- everything!

I went here to beat the chilly blues with some Hot Toddy. That's an Irish inspired warm cocktail with Jameson and apple cider. It is so good! I loved it.” - Yelp Review

Purchase a GiftYa card for Blind Lemon. 

There is no shortage of fine and upscale restaurants in the vibrant city of Cincinnati. Where do you plan on heading for your next dinner night out? Let us know in the comments!

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