There are few things better than a cozy bar on a chilly February evening.
It’s in that spirit we offer our first-ever Best Bars issue, featuring 50 of the area’s most beloved places to drink, eat, watch the game, play a game, catch up with friends or meet someone new.
Here’s a quick quiz to check your bar IQ:
- What local hangout is said to be the inspiration for Moe’sTavern in The Simpsons?
- What’s the oldest bar in Cleveland — and how were its earliest imports stocked?
- Where can you watch Japanese baseball while sharing yakatori small plates?
That’s one exam Cleveland Magazine senior editor Dillon Stewart and associate editor Henry Palattella would ace after brainstorming and editing this month’s cover story.
But they do have their favorites.
Stewart’s is Porco Lounge and Tiki Room in Ohio City. “It has a little bit of every quality that makes a bar great. The vibe, music and attire are casual and disarming, yet the Polynesian cocktails are made with as much care as you’d find in any fine dining venue in town.”
For Palattella, the place to be is Griffin Cider House & Gin Bar in Lakewood. “With dim lighting, a friendly and attentive staff and the ability to bring outside food in, Griffin provides you with a blank canvas to determine how your night is going to go.”
And let’s not forget Valentine’s Day. If you’re celebrating, check out the Velvet Tango Room — a vintage-style cocktail lounge that’s romantic enough to propose in with cozy leather couches, bohemian rugs and a fireplace.
If you’re not, head to Tina’s Nite Club in Cleveland for a fun night of karaoke and shooting pool with friends.
Either way, you’re in for a good time at Northeast Ohio’s best bars.