Minneapolis is a city known for its vibrant nightlife. Whether you're looking for a fancy cocktail bar or a more laid-back spot to grab a beer with friends, you'll find plenty of options here.
But for those who prefer their drinks cheap and their atmosphere unpretentious, dive bars are the way to go.
Dive bars may not have the fanciest decor or the most extensive drink menus, but they have something that more upscale bars can't replicate: a sense of community.
These are the kinds of places where regulars know each other by name, where the bartenders pour stiff drinks and don't judge, and where you can always count on a good conversation with a stranger.
In Minneapolis, you'll find dive bars in every neighborhood, from the trendy Uptown area to the more working-class Northeast. Some are dark and dingy, while others are bright and colorful.
Some have pool tables or dart boards, while others have jukeboxes or live music. But no matter what the specific details are, all of these bars share a certain charm that can't be found anywhere else.
If you're new to Minneapolis or just looking to expand your horizons, dive bars are a great place to start.
So grab a seat at the bar, order a drink, and prepare to experience some of the best the city has to offer.
Meteor is a dive bar with an old-school vibe and exposed-brick walls. They serve classic cocktails and delicious hot dogs.
The knowledgeable bartenders make amazing drinks that don't take long to prepare.
The cozy atmosphere is perfect for a night out with friends. It's not suitable for large parties due to limited seating.
Mexican vendors selling tamales and burritos are welcome here. Meteor is a unique and cool spot that's worth checking out.
2. Grumpy's Bar
Grumpy's Bar is a cozy neighborhood dive bar with a great selection of beer, cider, and cocktails.
The staff is friendly and the atmosphere is laid-back. The outdoor patio is a great place to enjoy a drink with friends.
While they don't serve real food, the frozen pizza is a hit among regulars. The bar also features live music and trivia nights.
If you're looking for a low-key spot to grab a drink, Grumpy's Bar is worth checking out.
3. Dusty's Bar
Dusty's Bar is a classic dive bar with a cozy and friendly atmosphere. The bartenders are quick and friendly, and the drinks are strong and reasonably priced.
The menu is short but concise, with good pub fare and tasty Dago burgers.
They have live music and poetry nights occasionally, adding to the charm of the place.
The patio is small but cozy, and the locals are welcoming and non-judgmental. A true gem of a neighborhood haunt that is worth a visit.
4. Jimmy's Bar & Lounge
Looking for a cozy dive bar with a friendly atmosphere and affordable drinks in town, then Jimmy's Bar & Lounge is worth checking out.
With its old-school charm, this bar attracts a loyal following of regulars who come for the strong pours and laid-back vibe.
It may not have a lot of frills, but it's the perfect spot for a casual night out with friends. The bartenders are welcoming, and the weekly events like bingo and happy hours add to the fun.
Keep in mind, it's cash-only, but there's an ATM inside. If you're looking for a solid neighborhood bar, Jimmy's Bar & Lounge won't disappoint.
5. Tony Jaros River Garden
Tony Jaros River Garden is a classic dive bar with a friendly atmosphere and great food.
The bar has a variety of unique drinks including the famous "Greenie" that packs a punch.
The menu offers delicious bar food and the service is top-notch.
This cash-only establishment is a hidden gem worth checking out.
6. Northeast Yacht Club
Northeast Yacht Club is a quintessential dive bar that has been around for over a century. The atmosphere is vintage and welcoming, with friendly staff and a small-town feel.
The bar offers a good selection of drinks at affordable prices, including $3 Busch Lattes all day, every day. The limited menu features simple yet tasty food, with the pizza and fish sandwich being fan favorites.
The bar also has a pool table, pinball machine, buck hunter, and jukebox for entertainment. The outdoor patio is a great spot to hang out during the summer months.
The bar only accepts cash unless you run a tab over a certain amount. All in all, Northeast Yacht Club is a fantastic spot for those looking for a down-to-earth, no-frills bar experience.
7. Cardinal Restaurant and Bar
Cardinal Restaurant and Bar is a neighborhood dive bar that serves up good food and a selection of beers.
The staff is friendly and attentive, making for a pleasant experience.
The atmosphere is laid-back and relaxed, perfect for a casual night out with friends. With pool tables and a patio, there's plenty of entertainment to be had.
Prices are reasonable, making Cardinal a great value for those looking for a no-frills bar experience.
8. The Bulldog Uptown
The Bulldog Uptown is a local dive bar with a laid-back atmosphere and a great beer selection.
The food is elevated pub fare and the service is friendly.
There are darts and a jukebox for entertainment, and the outdoor patio is a nice spot to relax.
It's a great place to hang out with friends over a few drinks and some good food.
9. Frenchman's Pub-Richfield
Frenchman's Pub-Richfield is a classic American dive bar with a cozy atmosphere and great prices.
The burgers are a must-try, and the bartenders are friendly and attentive. The pub has pool tables, arcade games, and plenty of cold beer to choose from.
While the service can be slow due to understaffing, the hardworking employees make up for it with their outstanding service.
If you're looking for a laid-back spot to grab a drink and some pub grub, Frenchman's Pub-Richfield is the place to be.
10. Northeast Palace Inc
Looking for a classic Northeast dive bar experience with live music and cheap drinks that won't break the bank, then look no further than Northeast Palace Inc.
This neighborhood watering hole has a great outdoor patio with fireplaces and a waterfall that provides a peaceful setting to enjoy a drink with friends.
The friendly staff adds to the welcoming atmosphere, and the diverse mix of patrons makes for entertaining people-watching.
It's not a hipster dive bar, but that's part of the charm. Come for the music, stay for the community vibe.
11. Otter's Saloon
Otter's Saloon is a quintessential Midwestern dive bar that offers nightly karaoke and happy hour specials.
The atmosphere is laid-back and the staff is friendly, making it a great spot for aspiring vocalists and anyone looking for a stiff drink.
Although the seating is limited and the screens could use an update, the bar makes up for it with its inventive drinks and hospitable hosts.
It's definitely worth a stop for anyone in the area looking for a fun and entertaining night out.
12. Como Tap
Como Tap is a dive bar and restaurant that offers fantastic food and a large drink menu at reasonable prices.
The bar has a simple interior with pool and karaoke, making it a great spot for a night out with friends. The patio seating is also a great option for those who prefer to sit outside.
The staff is friendly and welcoming, creating a great atmosphere for all budgets.
The Hangover Burger and cheese curds are highly recommended, and the rotating beer selection is fantastic. It's a classic local spot that is worth checking out.
13. Schooner Tavern
Schooner Tavern is a long-standing dive bar that offers live music and billiards. The bar has a welcoming neighborhood feel and a diverse crowd.
With a decent selection of beer and cocktails, it's a great spot for a low-key night out.
The live music is a highlight, with local talent performing seven nights a week. The intimate setting allows for an up-close experience with the musicians.
Schooner Tavern is a great spot for those looking for a laid-back atmosphere and some good tunes.
14. 19 Bar
The 19 Bar is a laid-back gay dive bar with a friendly atmosphere that welcomes everyone.
The bar has a decent selection of drinks that are priced reasonably, and the staff is always ready to serve with a smile. The bar has plenty of game tables, including pool and darts, to keep patrons entertained.
The outdoor smoking patio is a great spot to relax and enjoy a drink. The crowd is mostly male and older than 30, but everyone is welcome.
The bar is cash-only, so make sure to bring some bills. If you're looking for a casual spot to hang out and have a good time, the 19 Bar is definitely worth a visit.
15. The Terminal Bar
The Terminal Bar is a legendary dive bar that has been a neighborhood watering hole since 1932. It offers a down-to-earth atmosphere and live music, making it a great spot to catch local bands from all over the Midwest.
The bartenders are friendly and knowledgeable, serving up reasonably priced drinks and a variety of beers on tap.
The small vintage bar has a wild vibe and a mix of people, adding to its charm. It's a great spot to hang out with friends, listen to some music, and enjoy a cold beer.
If you're looking for a genuine dive bar experience, The Terminal Bar is the place to be.
16. 331 Club
The 331 Club is a classic dive bar that offers a laid-back atmosphere and live music every night.
The drinks are cheap, and the bartenders are friendly. The small size of the venue creates an intimate setting for enjoying local talent.
The patio is a nice addition for those who want to enjoy the fresh air. The food is simple but tasty.
This is a great spot to grab a drink and listen to some great music without breaking the bank.
Mayslack's is a classic dive bar that's known for its delicious food and great atmosphere. The portions are huge and the menu is extensive, with something for everyone.
The staff is friendly and accommodating, making it a great spot for a casual night out with friends.
The bar also features live music on weekends, adding to the fun and lively atmosphere.
If you're looking for a laid-back spot to grab a drink and bite to eat, Mayslack's is definitely worth checking out.
18. Mortimer's Bar and Restaurant
Mortimer's Bar and Restaurant is a neighborhood dive bar that offers pub fare and regular live entertainment.
The place has a relaxed atmosphere and friendly staff. The bar has a variety of pinball machines and foosball tables to keep patrons entertained.
The drinks are reasonably priced, and the food is good. The music venue at the back is a great place to catch a local show.
Mortimer's Bar and Restaurant is a perfect place to hang out with friends and have a good time.
19. Vegas Lounge
The Vegas Lounge is a classic dive bar that offers a low-key environment for those looking to unwind.
With nightly karaoke and a pool table, there's always something to do.
The bartenders are friendly and the drinks are affordably priced. The decor is old-school and adds to the charm of the place.
While it may not be the fanciest spot, the Vegas Lounge is a great choice for a laid-back night out.