Mixologists and drink curators? Not interested!
Ironically named cocktails? No thanks!
Clean and modern amenities? Not necessary!
Stick to the floors? Sign me up!
Whether you prefer a hand-crafted drink experience with ironically named drinks, or lukewarm 'Gansett from a chipped pint glass -- Providence has amazing options for both. Today, however, we are going to take a look at the seedier side of Providence inebriants -- the Best Dive Bars in Providence.
5. Nick-A-Nees (Jewelry District)
Yes, it may smell like a freshly cleaned public bathroom, but Nick-a-Nee's is the gem of the jewelry district. The bar may not have fancy amenities like matching tables and chairs, modern signage, or the ability to process credit cards, but they do have two very important features of a quality dive bar: cheap beer and a pool table. Also, Nick-a-Nee's hosts some of the best live music in the city -- and never a cover.
75 South St
Providence, RI 02903
4. Lonely Street (Olneyville)
Mike Sears' newest creation, Lonely Street was inspired by a bygone era, and keeps it's entertainment simple. When you walk in, you'll notice a faint scent from the site's previous tenant, a tire warehouse -- creating the illusion that you just walked into a 1960s-era greaser bar. The design isn't complicated, utilizing the building's naturally chipped plaster walls, a basic bar design, and two cool entertainment features: a chest-style juke box playing actual 45 RPM records, and an analog black and white photo booth that actually develops your photos on site.
You might know some of Sears' other cocktail lounges: Lili Marlene's, Justine's, Faust, and the Magdalene Room
1969 Westminster St
Providence, RI 02909
(no website, because that's how Mike Sears rolls)
3. The Parlour (College Hill)
Born from the ashes of a legendary Providence music venue (The Living Room) The Parlour is one of Rhode Island's best small music venues. The Parlour isn't much to look at, but it features many of the features that go into making a great dive bar: dim lighting, no frills, outdated decor, and the sudden urge to remember the last time you had a tetanus shot. However, there are two fantastic things that happen regularly at the Parlour: great live music, and fantastic food! (Try the Bill Walton)
1119 N Main St.
Providence, RI 02904
2. Elmhurst Pub (Elmhurst)
If you are looking for a sports option within the "dive bar" category, look no further than Elmhurst Pub on Smith Street. Located one block from the Providence College campus, Elmhurst really doesn't draw a college crowd (save for Wednesday Wing Night). But the pub does draw sports fans.
They feature several flat screen TVs, a pool table, and a great deal of sports memorabilia, including a replica Fenway Park Scoreboard.
Stop into Elmhurst for a cheap pitcher of 'Gansett, and be sure to say hello to local celebrity bartender, Gina, the best bartender in the city.
670 Smith St
Providence, RI 02908
1. Ivy Tavern (Mount Hope)
Oh. My. God. The burgers!
When it comes to dive bars, the food is usually pushed to the side -- but not at Ivy Tavern.
"You can't convince me that the burgers AREN'T laced with crack. They're so damn good." proclaimed one patron.
"Best burgers in the city!" clamored another.
They weren't wrong. The food is divine. The atmosphere is comfortably crowded but cozy. The prices are perfect. 2 beers and the city's best burger for less than $20. Sign me up!
758 Hope St
Providence, RI 02906