Nashville has no shortage of alcoholic offerings, but sometimes you’re looking for something slightly classier than a draft beer or glass of frosé. Whether it’s a first date, a college graduation, or an anniversary celebration, a special occasion deserves a specialty cocktail. Here are Nashville’s best places for cocktails.
BEST PLACES FOR COCKTAILS IN NASHVILLE
Industrial chic at its finest, Old Glory set up shop in a 1920s boiler room in Edgehill Village—towering smokestack and all. OG’s cocktails are as unique as the setting, with refreshing options like The Good Side and Working Title.
Order this: In Bloom (white chocolate, Campesino Silver Rum, strawberry, cherry tomato, lemon, Aperol)
Nashville’s pioneering speakeasy, Patterson House, is known for its keen attention to detail with every pour and shake. With a handsome square bar and tons of chandeliers, it makes for a great date spot—as long as you follow the house rules. They include no using your phone at the bar except for texting; no standing; you must be seated to order a drink, and men may not introduce themselves to women without an invitation.
Order this: Leftfielder (plum brandy, orange, red wine, maraschino)
Another speakeasy, another set of rules. After locating this unassuming East Nashville building, knock on the door and wait for the host to let you in—if there’s room. (Also note that Attaboy has a camera trained on the front door.) Once you enter the tiny space, the bartender will pepper you with a series of questions and eventually produce a perfectly customized cocktail. Now that’s service!
Order this: Seriously, whatever you want—that’s the point.
This artsy gastropub feels like it belongs on the other side of the Cumberland rather than nestled on a side street just south of Broadway. Post up at the bar or cuddle up in a nook with one of Bar Sovereign’s specialty cocktails, which change throughout the year but are consistently delicious.
Order this: Angel of Hirsch (Angel’s Envy, Jägermeister, honey, lemon, Angostura amaro)
Expect your stress level to plummet upon entering Wedgewood-Houston’s Bastion, where the nightly scene involves creative types sipping Old Fashioneds under twinkling strings of lights. The bar’s single-item food menu (nachos) allows the seasoned staff to spend that much more time honing their craft cocktails.
Order this: Good God! (rum, lemon, banana, spice)
The Fox Bar & Cocktail Club
The Fox Bar & Cocktail Club is a well-loved cocktail spot in East Nashville, with a capacity of a few dozen people. It’s tucked away behind Nicoletto’s Italian Kitchen on Gallatin Pike, so you probably wouldn’t know it was there unless you actually know it’s there. The interior features an Art Deco design, low lighting, and booth seating, all of which go well with cocktails.
Order this: Milk of the Poppy (Plymouth Sloe Gin, Amaro Montenegro, valencia orange, lemon stock, black walnut bitters, brut)
This somewhat hidden watering hole in the SoBro area of Downtown is a nice change-up from the scene on Broadway. Sidebar has a central bar with about a dozen bar stools, lounge seating, and a spacious outdoor courtyard. They focus on a mix of classic and seasonal cocktails, plus a selection of beers and wines.
Order this: All Night (Ketel One Botanical Vodka, cold brew, cream, Kahlua, orange bitters)
Feeling fancy? Head to this refurbished 1940s movie theater, saunter up the grand staircase, and immerse—then Instagram—yourself in the swanky lounge. In addition to a whiskey flight program, Sinema has a specialty cocktail menu that changes seasonally. The current cocktail offerings include Island Boy and Central Park West. Don’t miss happy hour!
Order this: Computer Blueberry (Espolon Anejo, Dolin Blanc, blueberry)
Gray & Dudley
Executive chef Levon Wallace’s restaurant-and-bar Gray & Dudley’s, housed in the 21c Museum Hotel, has earned raves for its infusion of grandeur into the Downtown Nashville scene. Sidle up to Gray & Dudley’s well-stocked bar and order an It’s a Vibe or Don’t Fall Y’all cocktail.
Order this: Daisy (Cathead Honeysuckle Vodka, lime, pomegranate, soda)
Tucked inside the Kimpton Aertson Hotel, Henley takes its drinks seriously. Cocktails are thoughtful and intricate like the You Already Know and Henley G&T. Also on tap are a bevy of beers, wines, and bubbles.
Order this: For Those Who Don’t Switch Up (seedlip garden, lemon tarragon shrub, ginger, soda)
Le Loup is Germantown’s latest cocktail destination. This popular spot is open Thursday through Sunday from 5:00pm to late. If you’re needing an event space, Le Loup is perfect for corporate functions, receptions, showers, and parties.
Order this: Pretty Baby (gin, genever, Cocchi americano, lemon, alfalfa, club soda, red wine float)
Couple your cocktail with one of the most beautiful interiors in Nashville. Liberty Common’s bright space and sprawling bar area are the perfect places to sip a frozen drink. When the weather’s nice, the patio is the place to be.
Order this: Frozen Wildflower Lemonade
A perennial go-to for refined farmhouse fare, 12 South’s Josephine also serves up contemporary drinks at its sizable bar. Not sure what you’re in the mood for? Try the Cocktail of the Week, the restaurant’s series that makes its bartenders’ wildest dreams come true. One recent, delicious example is the Don’t Ryde About Town, made with bourbon, port, Cynar, black walnut bitters, and orange zest.
Order this: The Toronto (rye, amaro, simple syrup, bitters)
LA Jackson isn’t just another rooftop bar in Nashville—it’s the rooftop bar in Nashville. For a seriously swanky experience, make your way to the tippy-top of the Gulch’s Thompson Hotel for cocktails that are on par with the view. If you value your personal space, we suggest going on a weeknight.
Order this: Let’s Hang Out? (gin, curacao, coconut, lemon)
While you might be lured to The Mockingbird by its spin on elevated diner fare, you’ll want to stay for its creative cocktails—and two stellar patios on which to sip them. Highlights include the Punchin’ Bag, which is literally a clear bag of spiked fruit punch with a straw plunked in it.
Order this: Tequila Mockingbird (mezcal, tequila, lime, egg white)
While many cocktail bars are dark and intimate by design, Strategic Hospitality’s Pinewood Social is bright and airy—there’s even a bowling alley and a pool onsite. Matching the lively ambiance is the bar program, which offers cocktails whose names are as fun to blurt out as they are to sip.
Order this: Too Many Birds (rum, pineapple, almond, cacao-infused select, egg white)
Urban Cowboy Public House
This East Nashville bar can skew a bit hipster, but beyond the rustic decor is a warm (literally, thanks to the fire pit) and welcoming extension of the adjacent Urban Cowboy B&B. The Urban Cowboy Public House staff takes pride in putting a modern spin on its wide array of beverages, whether it’s a basil gimlet or a rosé Paloma.
Order this: Sherry Cobbler (sherry, Spanish vermouth, citrus, pineapple)
Rosemary & Beauty Queen
A classy joint compared to its laidback Five Points neighbors, Rosemary & Beauty Queen looks like a typical charming East Nashville house on the exterior. Inside, however, you’ll find one of the hippest bars in town. Served in quirky vintage glassware, popular cocktails include the daring Tiny Man.
Order this: Remake/Remodel (vodka, aperitivo, lemon, ginger beer)
Gertie’s Bar at The 404 Kitchen
Gertie’s Bar on the ground level of The 404 Kitchen is a top spot to get your cocktail fix. The space is cozy with a central bar, lounge furniture, and window seating. After a couple of beverages, head upstairs for one of the best meals in Music City.
Order this: Living’s Easy (Buffalo Trace bourbon, toffee syrup, lemon, egg white, ruby port wine)