The Lost Leaf
It's easy to get lost in the bounty of bocks, blondes, and other craft and artisan brews that make up The Lost Leaf's lengthy drink menu. From lagers to lambics — and dozens of pale ales and pilsners in between — this bohemian beer and wine parlor offers endless alcoholic options for artists and urbanites alike. A variety of wines, sakes, and ciders are also available to slake your thirst.
914 N. 5th St., 602-258-0014, thelostleaf.org
George & Dragon
Expats from Europe and other international origins flock to this venerated English pub, which is why owner David Wimberley regularly stocks suds from around the world. More than 68 bottled beers and three-dozen drafts (blimey!) can be had, including such far-flung brews as Baltika, Chimay, Sarajevsko. Such harder-to-find beers as Fuller's, Whitbread Pale Ale, and Hoegaarden are also in stock.
4240 N. Central Ave., 602-241-0018, georgeanddragonpub.net
The Rum Bar
Nary a drop of Captain Morgan can be found inside Dwayne Allen and Danielle Leoni's quaint rum bar, located adjacent to their popular Jamaican eatery, The Breadfruit. Instead, they're pouring far more exotic and high-end rumbullion for patrons. More than 100 top-shelf brands from throughout the Caribbean and around the globe — including such aged and vintage selections as Masusalem, Barbancourt, and Dos Maderas — are mixed into mojitos and daiquiris or served straight up while reggae plays over the sound system.
108 E. Pierce St., 602-267-1266, thebreadfruit.com
Steve and Andi Rosenstein reawaken the blithe spirit of Prohibition-style drinking at their establishment, housed in a 1920s-era warehouse (which once functioned as an speakeasy). Old-school cocktails like Sidecars, Whiskey Sours, and Rusty Nails are served in mason jars at an antique Art Deco bar (complete with vintage seltzer bottles and other retro fixtures). Thankfully, bartenders forgo bathtub gin and bootlegged spirits in favor of premium liquors, fresh-squeezed juices, and organic ingredients.
525 S. Central Ave., 602-866-3823, theducephx.com
Colorful doesn't begin to describe both the décor and the drink selection at this vibrant nightspot, located next door to Bliss. Lively libations, like the vodka-laced Cherry Cherry Bom Bom and the amber-hued Dreamy Creamy Orangesicle, are crafted inside a lounge area decorated with abstract iron sculptures or beneath the outdoor drink pavilion fashioned in the shape of a palm tree. Both your eyes and taste buds are in for a workout.
901 N. 4th St., 602-795-1792, blissonfourth.com
Creativity abounds almost every evening on both floors of Bar Smith, as hipsters and hip-hop fans alike crowd this bi-level beat shack, thanks to its killer collection of dance nights. Bottle-tossing mixologists show off their furious flairtending skills downstairs while turntablist tricksters work their magic from the rooftop lounge during such events as The Scenario (Wednesdays) and Sticky Fingers (Fridays).
130 E. Washington St., 602-229-1265, barsmithphoenix.com
There's plenty of theatrical smoke that billows throughout Club Silver on weekend nights, but it may as well be steam. Sizzling hip-hop and Latin beats are laid down by DJ duos as sweltering dance-floor drama unfolds. The smoking-hot waitstaff heat things up further by attaching scorching sparklers to bottles of premium booze bound for big ballers in the VIP booths.
136 E. Washington St., 602-254-0800, silver136.com
Although downtown hasn't had a repertory house for more than 30 years, the cineastes behind the newly opened FilmBar are making up for lost time. Indie, art house, and foreign films are screened regularly at the 80-seat cinema, as are cult classics, documentaries, and old favorites. Even better, a beer and wine bar is in the lobby, where patrons can purchase some pinot grigio to go along with their double feature.
815 N. 2nd St., 602-595-9187, thefilmbarphx.com
Lucky Strike Lanes
Bursting with neon, bumping beats, and stylish spirit, this CityScape hotspot offers urbanites to get in some 10-pin action in a swanky setting. Equal parts bowling alley and nightclub, Lucky Strike features a dozen lanes outfitted with flat-screens and plush couches, as well as two bars, three pool tables, and plenty of luxe libations.
50 E. Jefferson St., 602-732-5490, bowlluckystrike.com
Hard Rock Café
Elton John's cactus costume, Justin Timberlake's bedazzled stage outfits, and Stevie Nicks' tambourine are just a sample of the musical memorabilia on display at Phoenix's version of the restaurant chain. There's also a badass assortments of autographed guitars, and a treasure trove of concert posters, photographs, and other vintage ephemera scattered throughout. Rock on.
3 S. 2nd St., 602-261-7625, hardrockcafe.com
There's a top-shelf security system protecting the downtown domicile of Keith Jackson, not to mention a few high-caliber handguns and an ornery German shepherd named Günter. An intimidating setup, most certainly, but completely necessary considering that the local punk icon (and frontman for The Glass Heroes) wants no harm to befall his prized collection of vintage Gibson Les Paul guitars.
Valued around a half-million dollars, Jackson's six-string stash contains more than 40 of the revered solid-body electric guitars that the 47-year-old has accumulated over the past three decades, including a dozen '50s-era goldtop models, and six white Customs. Each has its own story, like the axes given by such famous friends as the late Joe Strummer of The Clash and the Sex Pistols' Steve Jones.
"They've gotten more expensive lately and keep climbing in value," he says. "Guys in Japan and Norway have offered me hundreds of thousands, but I'll never sell. Though I'm sure once I die, some kid will buy 'em and slap on some Green Day stickers."