Toast and drink to your bae by avoiding the cliché dinner date at a fancy restaurant and doing a drink date instead. You can keep it classy while keeping it casual—just check out these bars! You’ll find it’s possible to woo your date the old fashioned way in the most unexpected of places.
*Shout out to all the singles out there: these are for you too.
This is not a ranking; bars are listed in no particular order. For the purposes of this article, the number of features is limited.
If you want an old fashioned experience, go to this jazz bar where you can show yourself off in a cocktail dress or suit while sipping a shaken martini. Although this place doesn’t serve food, it offers a relaxing atmosphere where you can treat your date to a one-on-one conversation and an original recipe cocktail like the French 75.
#SpoonTip: You can always dress casual too (i.e. jeans and a tee).
If your date is all about craft beer, go here to try the new beers in this month’s cycle like the Funky Buddha’s Nib Smuggler—a cocoa blended milk porter which tastes like chocolate milk—or a popular and well-loved drink like the mango infused wheat beer, Proof Mango Wit.
Plus, you can satisfy your hunger with all sorts of classic foods. Try the Sam Adams beer cheese dip with two salted pretzels, for the full experience.
Always old school, this bar offers straight up Jim Beam—with legitimate luxardo maraschino cherries (here’s the difference)—to Moscow Mules and Mint Juleps. So try a Six Shooter—a spice rimmed Modelo Especial infused with three-pepper tequila—or a martini while you and your date enjoy a local folk band and specialty pizza from Gaines Street Pies.
If you and your date are secret (or not so secret) nerds, release your inner child with air hockey and arcade games while pretending you’re still an adult with a Fire Betty (center left), Area 51 (middle), or TMGNT (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle…with gin).
In case you didn’t know, this bar is considered the “Cupid of Bars” in Tally. So if you promised your date a trip to New Orleans but couldn’t follow through, experience Mardi Gras here without ever leaving Tallahassee. At this social haven, you can relish anything from a classic beer, to a Bloody Mary, to a Hurricane (above) made fresh from an original recipe.
Although this place is a social hub for beer lovers, it’s also a place for a couple to sit by themselves and enjoy a few drinks. They don’t have food, but they do have a cozy outdoor sitting area where you can cuddle and enjoy a night together with a malty red ale like the Abandoned Planet (above), or a tart Gose (learn what this is) like Kissing Giants.
Not only does this place provide great food like the well-loved Rock Shrimp Mac n’ Cheese, but it serves signature cocktails such as the strawberry mojito and red sangria (above). Just in case you didn’t make a reservation and the restaurant is packed, you can go to Mint Lounge next door.
Now this place is a true House of Blues. Buy tickets for two and enjoy soul music from artists such as Eleanor Tallie and Brandon Santini. You’ll love it so much, you’ll want to get up and dance. And although this place doesn’t serve liquor, it still serves beer and wine. Plus if you’re hungry, you can get some fried fish from Mrs. Ernestine right next door. Trust me. It’s AMAZING.
But let’s not forget this winner:
Honorary: Level 8 Lounge
On the top of Hotel Duval is a private getaway where you can view the top of the city from a chair on the deck. So kick back and enjoy a Golden Key (Hotel Duval’s signature cocktail), a Fitzgerald, or a classic margarita on the rooftop. This place is so sophisticated; it’ll get your date swooning in no time.