Ten Favorite Dive Bars in Greater Phoenix
Photos by Benjamin Leatherman
In the mood for a little slumming? Any of the dank dives populating metro Phoenix are sure to do the trick, each of which offer cheap booze, cheap thrills, and memorable drinking experiences aplenty.
While many of our favorite local dives have fallen by the wayside (such as Neuman's, Pete's Newsroom, Six East, or Mecca Lounge) over the years, plenty of other beer and booze joints dot the Valley landscape and feature all the hallmarks of a classic dive experience: Furnishings held together with duct tape, copious stains of a questionable nature, and various pickled foodstuffs lurking about in jars.
Here's our list of some of the best places to get a little bit of the lowlife in your nightlife.
Eager for an early start to your daydrinking? The doors at this McDowell Road alehouse open exactly at 6 a.m. every morning. Happy hour prices start promptly at 9 a.m. and is typically attended by hard drinkers eager for their morning brew, whether its of the malt-and-hops variety (domestic bottles are offered for $2.50) or something a caffeinated nature (cups of coffee go for 50 cents). Like most dives, microwaved snacks and dirt-cheap cigarettes are for sale, its resident barflies are both unusual-looking and eager to chat, and the atmosphere here is relaxed, as illustrated by occasional patron who stops by wearing pajamas.
9. Mother's Bar & Grill
Perched among the dusty lots and industrial warehouses of West Buckeye Road, Mother's is a ramshackle saloon devoid of frills but filled with character. Shuffle across the stained plywood and concrete floor and belly up to the wooden bar where many a regular has carved their name. A mere four brews are on tap, illustrated dollar bills decorate the ceiling, the smoking patio is a mess of rusty beer cans and cigarette buts, and probably the fanciest mixed drink served are the homemade Cheladas poured into gigantic plastic cups. The bartenders dispense plenty of sass to go along with your drink, but refrain from mouthing off. Just like your own mama, the staff at Mother's don't take no guff and aren't afraid of 86'ing troublemakers.
8. Tallyho Cocktail Lounge
A unique throwback tucked away in a North Scottsdale strip mall, the Tallyho is filled with Olde English decor and an old school aura. Hard drinkers gather amid wrought iron furnishings and get a chaser of kitsch to go with their cocktails. As light streams through stained glass windows and statuettes of monarchs gaze down from high atop their shelves, patrons tie one on at the oval-shaped bar or grab a seat at any of the red vinyl booths to get a snootfull. Owner Lois Richards has persistently kept things the same at the Tallyho pretty much since it opened in 1969, whether it's the tacky look or the ultra-cheap prices (including $3.50 well drinks and $3 brews).
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