The most amazing time of the year – summer – has started. I love this season so much and everything about it. One of the best thing is to sit outside with your friends or loved ones in a nice bar drinking sweet cocktails or some sparkling wine talking about life and sharing memories. This is why I wanted to write about my favorite bars in Raleigh area.
I am not a food critic or so, I simply want to share some of my favorite Raleigh bars that I and my husband love to go to.
Favorite Raleigh Bars
Here is a list of my favorite Raleigh bars as of now. These are the most comfortable and beautiful places with a nice atmosphere. If you live in Raleigh or will be traveling here soon, I’d recommend visiting these bars.
Bittersweet is located in Raleigh downtown and is very popular. I love this place a lot, and they have a great selection of drinks and snacks. They also have special drinks depending on the season or the current events.
They have outside and inside areas. In the winter, they usually have heaters outside which creates a cozy environment.
My all-time favorite Bittersweet drink is Espresso Martini. It’s so creamy and delicious, and if you need extra energy late in the evening with a little twist, I would definitely recommend this cocktail.
Barcelona Wine Bar
Barcelona Wine Bar is a beautiful and usually busy place where you can have a nice glass of wine or a cocktail. I like this place because of their aesthetic, atmosphere, and location. There are outdoor and indoor areas. You can also have brunch or dinner there. However, I never tried their food.
The only thing I wish that they had is a wider cocktail selection. But if you go there, it’s probably logical to try their wines.
Despite the name, it does not remind me of Barcelona. Rather it reminds me of a posh New York bar. The wait time can get quite long but the vibe and atmosphere are worth it, in my opinion.
Another thing you need to know is that Barcelona Wine Bar is not a small local bar, they have locations in multiple states.
The Ark Royal Tiki bar
The Ark Royal Tiki bar is probably my most favorite bar so far. I love the atmosphere and the location as well as the decorations and their selection of drinks. They have a big indoor space and a pretty cozy and cute outdoor space.
There is also a parking lot right in front of the bar and if you’re lucky, you will not have to park your car far away.
My favorite drink from their menu is Belafonte (the blue-ish one with a flower on the photo). If you visit the Ark Royal Tiki bar, I would definitely recommend ordering this drink.
Brewing & Taproom
Trophy Brewing has multiple locations and different bars in Raleigh. One of them that I really like is Brewing & Taproom. It’s a great place that is quite secluded so you can have your peace and quiet. However, this place gets quite busy. Luckily, they have a large outdoor area.
If you’re hungry, they usually have food trucks on site. Check out the schedule to see if your favorite truck is there!
I love this place because they’re not located downtown, it’s very low-key and the quality and service are still great. Try their frozen rose if you visit this location.
Watts & Ward
Watts & Ward is an infamous bar in the downtown area. To enter you need to show your ID and pay a certain amount. It makes everything way fancier. Usually, there is a line to enter the bar, and can get quite busy inside.
There is also an outdoor area where they play live music (not all the time though) and have another bar. If you like dark academia and vintage-looking places, Watts & Ward is definitely for you.
This is also the place where I and my husband got engaged, so I have sweet memories from there.
State of beer
State of Beer is another location by Trophy Brewing. I am not sure if this place qualifies as a bar but I like the atmosphere in this place and its selection of alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks. Despite being in downtown Raleigh, they have plenty of space indoors and outdoors. Moreover, they have a food menu and my husband loves their sandwiches. I never tried their food though, so can’t speak about it. But if you’re looking for a place to chat and have multiple drink options, I would recommend it.
In my humble opinion, those are some of the best Raleigh bars so far. If you have been to Raleigh or live here, what are your favorite Raleigh bars or places to go to? I and my husband love exploring new places and if you have any recommendations, we’d like to hear them!