Best Neighborhood Bar, Central Phoenix - 2008
Who'd have thought a tiny bar with a sign that gives a nod to '80s and ska scenesters would be such a friendly, welcoming spot? Usually, a bar that dips its toe in the too-cool pool will pack an attitudinal wallop. Instead, Shady's '60s interior is retro and relaxed. Pick a drink, any drink, and their engaging bartenders will remember it the next time you visit, even if it's months later. How do they do it? We don't know, but we're sure they've harnessed some of that mojo to stock a cool jukebox. From The Police to The Clash, this collection hits every disaffected teenage music fan's faux-nostalgic spot. We're not kidding about the friendly vibe. At Shady's, flying solo isn't an anomaly or prelude to a hookup; it's an invitation to make new friends. Good neighbors, indeed.