What are the best bars in San Diego?

Answers from Our Experts (1)

Julia Weiler

If you want to sip suds at one of the best beer bars in San Diego be sure to tap into Blind Lady Ale House.   The bartenders take the art of serving craft draft very seriously at Blind Lady.  They’re all about the perfect pour, which they accomplish with painstaking attention to the details. 

They begin with a direct draw system that ensures your beer is sourced fresh from the keg rather than the line.  The suds land in a just-rinsed glass specifically selected to cradle the aroma and flavors of your artisanal ale as the brewer intended.   The glassware even comes labeled with a fill line so that you know you’re getting an honest pour, but also leaves room at the top for some beautiful foam.  Last but not least, each beer is served at precisely the correct temperature for the ultimate beer-drinking experience.

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Swankier than your standard bar, the Vodka Lounge at 333 Pacific serves top-shelf martinis in a lux ocean-front setting for the slick price of only $7 each.  Sip on dessert-inspired drinks like Key Lime Pie and Toasted Macaroon for a sweet treat with a kick or opt for the 120 Cosmo, a lo-cal “skinny” cocktail that’s fat on flavor. 

Pair your aperitif with savory seafood canapés expertly prepared by Chef Bryon Hyre.  Choose from an assortment of sumptuous sushi rolls or pick a spicy platter of crab, shrimp and lobster nachos.  If you visit the lounge during happy hour you can snack on a selection of seven appetizers such as calamari and ceviche for a mere $7 per. 

While the martinis are always $7each in the Vodka Lounge the venue offers weekly specials as well.  Slip in on Sundays for the seafood special paired with a stem of bubbly for $14 or meander in on Mondays for microbrew madness with pints like Stone Pale Ale offered at $4 per pour.  Thursdays are burger and brew themed with 3 Kobe beef sliders combined with a flight of 3 craft drafts for $15.

The Vodka Lounge at 333 Pacific is located in beautiful Oceanside just a stone throw away from wide palm-lined beaches.  Look for the Wyndham Oceanside Pier Resort across from the historic wooden pier.  The lounge and restaurant are situated on the resort’s first floor at 333 N. Pacific Street, Oceanside CA 92054.

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Located in the fashionable Cedros Avenue Design District in artsy Solana Beach, the internationally admired Belly Up Tavern is one of the coolest concert venues and watering holes in all of San Diego.  Lauded for its longtime history of bringing popular performers to the area, Belly Up has consistently won the vote for “Best Live Music Venue” in local publications such as San Diego Magazine, the Union Tribune and The Reader.

The voguish venue is known for hosting a wide array of entertainers ranging from contemporary artists like newcomer Tristan Prettyman, to well-established and much-loved musicians such as Ziggy Marley and old school favorite B.B. King.  The trendy tavern tends to attract a hip crowd which often includes celebrities.  Prince Harry was recently spotted at the club where he had a royal good time hanging with locals and grooving to San Diego’s best beats.  Rolling Stone Magazine named Belly Up as one of the west coast’s hottest clubs.

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