Nightlife

  • Best Bar: The Wharf Rat

    Best Bar: The Wharf Rat

    801 S. Ann St., (410) 276-8304, thewharfrat.com The building that houses the Wharf Rat is said to have been a bar since the late 18th century. The Wharf Rat may not have the frozen-in-time feel of McSorley’s in New York, but the cozy confines, roaring fireplace in colder months, and maritime decorations...

  • Best Bartender: Quest

    Best Bartender: Quest

    Asian Taste, 916 W. 36th St., (410) 467-0100, asiantastebaltimore.com Beyond the exterior of what appears to be an ordinary Asian restaurant on the Avenue is a bartender whose cocktails will take you on a journey—the kind of bartender you can trust when you ask for “whatever you want to make me”...

  • Best New Bar: Paulie Gee’s

    Best New Bar: Paulie Gee’s

    3535 Chestnut Ave., (410) 647-1048, pauliegee.com/hampden Opened a little over a year ago, the bar behind the restaurant is a great retreat from the busyness of Hampden’s 36th Street. Wood paneling and old trophies line the walls, giving the space a homey feel like somebody’s club basement, but...

  • Best Dive Bar: Venice Tavern

    Best Dive Bar: Venice Tavern

    339 S. Conkling St., (443) 413-5647, facebook.com/VeniceTavern The blog The City That Breeds once called this the dictionary definition of a dive bar, and CP’s Baynard Woods once wrote that Venice Tavern is “a bulwark against the brave new world” of $6 beers. Hell, we even gave it this award in...

  • Best Gay Bar: G•A•Y Lounge

    Best Gay Bar: G•A•Y Lounge

    518 N. Charles St., (443) 438-5868, g-a-ybaltimore.com G•A•Y, which opened in April, has quickly snuck into Baltimore as the new and necessary gay bar, and one that seems to take all kinds and host all kinds of events. And at a moment when it feels as though gay bars are on the decline in Baltimore,...

  • Best Physical Bar: Verde

    Best Physical Bar: Verde

    641 S. Montford Ave., (410) 522-1000, verdepizza.com Known for its delicious Neapolitan pizza, Verde also has a great cocktail program worth seeking out. There’s an added bonus in that anybody who pulls up to the bar can enjoy their delicious drink on a beautiful antique marble-topped wooden bar...

  • Best Irish Bar: Ó Flynn’s Crab & Cask House

    Best Irish Bar: Ó Flynn’s Crab & Cask House

    3432 S. Hanover St., (410) 355-9040, oflynnsbaltimore.com You would be hard pressed to find another “Irish” bar in Baltimore that regularly pumps Irish Republican Army protest songs through its speakers and has painted on its outside wall “You are now entering Free Brooklyn,” an homage to the original...

  • Best Venue: The Crown

    Best Venue: The Crown

    1910 N. Charles St., (410) 625-4848, facebook.com/TheCrownBaltimore No other venue in Baltimore exemplifies the city’s multitudes: Where the hell else could your week look like this, in the same spot? Start with karaoke on Tuesday, and while you wait for your song pop over to whatever’s happening...

  • Best Promoter: Qué Pequeño

    Best Promoter: Qué Pequeño

    Musician (one half of Melanin Free), DJ (as Station North Sadboi), videographer, and writer Qué Pequeño had, in the months leading up to the shuttering of the Bell Foundry, taken over booking shows in the basement, which was renamed You Know T.F. Where. The shows—and the Bell in general—had become...

  • Best DJ: All Of Y’all

    Best DJ: All Of Y’all

    Ok, like the Best Neighborhood category, we’re cheating a little here. But there are lots of great DJs in the city and they’re often doing very different things in different venues and to lump them all together in order to pick the Best one seems well, unwise. The same could be said of nearly every...

  • Best Dance Party: Version

    Best Dance Party: Version

    Baltimore City Paper Best DJ in the Club 2016 Trillnatured’s dance night in the Crown’s Blue Room became one of the most exciting and heavily attended parties right from the start. Along with the strong list of guest DJs for each installment (Station North Sadboi, Shawn Smallwood, Tropixxx, DJ...

  • Best Bar For Arthur Russell Fans: Diskobar

    Best Bar For Arthur Russell Fans: Diskobar

    911 N. Charles St., (443) 878-5448, facebook.com/diskobarbaltimore Among the images displayed prominently at Diskobar, the dance music-themed bar underneath of Kumari in Mount Vernon, is a photo of Arthur Russell, the cello-playing, avant-garde-leaning disco innovator. You can see Russell’s face...

  • Best Strip Club: Haven Place

    Best Strip Club: Haven Place

    400 N. Haven St., (410) 276-9420 Best Strip Club usually goes to one of the city’s flashier joints like Millstream Inn or Fantasies, both of whom have won in the past, but this year, as it is our last one, we decided to give it to the humble Haven Place in East Baltimore. The Haven opened in 1967...

  • Best Happy Hour: The Brewer’s Art

    Best Happy Hour: The Brewer’s Art

    1106 N. Charles St., (410) 547-6925, thebrewersart.com Sure, you can stop in during normal office-hours-working-person happy hour (Tuesdays through Fridays from 4-7 p.m., plus from Tuesdays through Thursdays, a late-night happy hour from 11 p.m.-close) but some weeks you really need that all-day...

  • Best Karaoke: 3 Miles House

    Best Karaoke: 3 Miles House

    2701 Miles Ave., (410) 235-4275 Though it be a small bar, 3 Miles House packs enough karaoke might for the sound to carry beyond its walls and onto the street, a likely annoyance to adjacent houses. And yet nobody seems bothered, maybe because so many of the neighbors are inside belting out their...

  • Best Use of a Toxic Dump: Sandlot

    Best Use of a Toxic Dump: Sandlot

    1000 Wills St., facebook.com/sandlotbaltimore As everyone knows, Baltimore was once a thriving port bustling with industry along the water’s edge. Now it’s condominium towers and taxpayer-financed corporate headquarters sprouting up on the Inner Harbor shores. Even after this became commonplace,...

  • Best Moving Target: Club Charles

    Best Moving Target: Club Charles

    1724 N. Charles St., (410) 727-8815, clubcharles.us Back in July, City Paper reported that the iconic Station North bar would be closing for renovations, though some of the employees didn’t know if it would ever be reopening. Nobody really knew for sure. Everything was dependent upon the whims...

  • Best Saga: Crossbar der Biergarten

    Best Saga: Crossbar der Biergarten

    18 E. Cross St., (443) 438-4013, crossbarbaltimore.com Four years after its conception by Federal Hill bar mogul Brian McComas, through two different liquor licenses and a trip to the state’s second-highest court, Crossbar finally opened for business this spring. Originally vehemently opposed by...

  • Best Movie Mixologist: Ginny Lawhorn

    Best Movie Mixologist: Ginny Lawhorn

    Landmark Theatres Harbor East, 645 S. President St., (410) 244-6636, landmarktheatres.com/baltimore/harbor-east Landmark was one of the first movie theaters in the area to serve booze, but the concept has since proliferated. Even with these new competitors, Landmark still has the advantage thanks...

  • Best Late-Night Happy Hour: Shocktail Hour

    Best Late-Night Happy Hour: Shocktail Hour

    Golden West Café, 1105 W. 36th St., (410) 889-8891, goldenwestcafe.com Golden West’s monthly late-night “Shocktail Hour” is what you get when you cross a stalwart bar with horror movie culture. Hosted by Melissa LaMartina, aka Aurora Gorealis, the event kicks off at 9 p.m. and features an original...

  • Best Weird 4/20 Metal Moment: Jera at The Bun Shop

    Best Weird 4/20 Metal Moment: Jera at The Bun Shop

    22 Light St., (410) 982-0147, facebook.com/TheBunShop Sipping beers they brought and nibbling on pastries they bought, a sizable group of 20-somethings stood around waiting, most of them wearing various shades of black and then, what the fuck? All of a sudden there are skulls and incense and candles...

  • Best Showman: Shawn Smallwood

    Best Showman: Shawn Smallwood

    Shawn Smallwood, aka Destruskhawn, is the city’s most astute student of DJing, exploring the wild-man maximalism of Larry Levan, Nicki Siano, David Mancuso, and others. For example, his set at Version at the beginning of the year jumped from a remix of the theme song to “Sailor Moon” to Ginuwine’s...

  • Best Good Time: The Black Hole

    Best Good Time: The Black Hole

    322 N. Franklintown Road, (443) 653-2050 Formerly Levels, the Black Hole is, as Devin Allen told City Paper earlier this year, a place where the bartenders aren’t beholden to any real rules when it comes to giving you that shot you ordered: “They not real bartenders, so they pour you big ass shots....

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