Bikini Lounge

The Bikini Lounge is the kind of watering hole Charles Bukowski would have immortalized in poem or Jack Kerouac would have lived across from while banging out On the Road. A place where the beer is cheap and the chicks are extra-friendly. The sort of taproom where you can meet anyone from a teamster to a mad artist to a street philosopher all in as much time as it takes you to amble the length of the lounge. This is especially true on First Fridays, with all roads leading to this 57-year-old tiki tavern with its regulation pool table, jukebox, and grass-skirted wahine painting hanging behind the bar. There's the feeling that anything can and probably will happen, like being in a central London pub on a Friday night or playing blackjack on the Strip in Vegas. Off nights, the Bikini Lounge reverts to a neighborhood hang, but on First Fridays it's like a little bit of New York's East Village right here in Phoenix. And for our money, it's the greatest dive bar ever. Readers' Choice: Chez Nous

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