Sunday, February 20, 2011

Miami's Bar Scene

Whoever said Miami doesn't have a bar scene is wrong. I'm not talking about the Grove here. While there is lots to love about the Grove, there's only so many times you can deal with the rowdy college kids at Tavern and Sandbar. What I'm talking about are all the fun bars and lounges popping up around downtown, Wynwood and the Design District. Each one has a locals-only/come as you are vibe that you can't really find on South Beach or in the Grove. They each embrace Miami's culture in a different way, from the art to the music to the food, and for that reason they attract a following.

This past Friday we did some bar hopping. Started off at Cafeina, a more upscale lounge/bar in Wynwood, to say hi to a good friend. Little did we know it was their one-year anniversary so the place was packed! We ordered a few things off their tapas menu and everything was delish. I recommend the sliders, tuna tacos, goat cheese croquettes, and of course the truffle fries.

Then we stopped by the DRB - Democratic Republic of Beer, situated right across the street from the Arsht Performing Arts Center. Friends have been telling me for a while now that this place is awesome but I never got around to paying a visit until this weekend. Every seat in the house was taken, inside and out. No surprise, they serve nearly 500 different beers from around the world and also have an eclectic food menu. Definitely a cool spot to hang out and grab a drink. It was dark inside but I managed a snap a few decent pics.

Our last stop was Vagabond to see the Royal Bangs play. I believe Vagabond has been around the longest of the three bars. It's not too far from the DBR, still I wouldn't recommend walking at night. While the neighborhood is up-and-coming, there are definitely some sketchballs hanging around. You never feel crowded at Vagabond because there are two rooms, the main room and the band room, and a huge outside patio area where they fire up the grill from time to time and serve burgers and dogs. Sign up  for their mailing list and go on a night when a good band is playing.

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