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Culturelist
Downtown Watering Holes
CATEGORY: Food/Drink
CharBar Map It
305 Travis St.
713-222-8177

Get your boots shined and enjoy a bourbon and ginger and great conversation while you wait. This tucked-away spot on Travis Street (next door to Warren's Inn and just down from Cabo and Market Square Bar and Grill)  is one of our favorite hole-in-the wall, gotta be in-the-know spots. Part tailor's, part drinkery, imbibing has never felt so productive.

The Flying Saucer Draught Emporium Map It
705 Main St.
713-228-9472

After work, The Flying Saucer Draught Emporium is definitely one of the better bars in downtown with a wide variety of beers. Whether you are a fan of bitters or not, you can get your English and German fix for a few bucks. Of course, there are regular specials such as Monday pint night with more than 70 drafts offered at $3 each. Part rowdy, part quiet, the outside patio allows you to smoke and converse with friends --- and even make some new ones. 

Hearsay Map It
218 Travis St.
713-225-8079

Housed in the renovated Foley-Kennedy building, the second-oldest bulding in town, Hearsay is a gastro lounge and sophisticated bar offering creative twists on the classics — like the Scotch apple martini. We recommend the Twelve Spot. As for the bar food? Think Mahi Mahi fish tacos and parmesan rosemary fries over wings and chicken tenders.

La Carafe Map It
813 Congress St.
713-229-9399

This cash-only bar is not only haunted but it also has a rich heritage and antique vibe (the building is listed on the National Register of Historic Places). Whether you are there for the reasonable Shiner or the cider, La Carafe is definitely a preserved gem that is near Buffalo Bayou. The upstairs patio is the place to be on a breezy spring day. Smoking is  allowed on the patio and people-watching is prime on a Friday night. Check out the old guys smoke cigars and hit on young women. Pretty amusing. Just be careful going down the narrow stairs and be sure to take out cash ahead of time.

McElroy's and Molly's Map It
909 Texas St., Ste. A
713-223-2444

Dueling Irish pubs Shay McElroy's and Molly's straddle each side of Main Street between Prairie and Texas Streets. The ambiance is as similar as the patron's ancestry, but we tend toward's Molly's for our St. Patrick's Day Festivities. Beware the stairs — they're steep.

State Bar Map It
909 Texas St., Ste. 2A
713-229-8888

Located on Texas Street on the second floor of the Rice Building, this historic bar is the place to be and be seen. A favorite of judges, hot shot lawyers and the reporters who cover them, the decor and atmosphere date to its oil boom days as the Capitol Club, a playground of the city's wheelers and dealers.

notsuoH Map It
314 Main St.
713-409-4750

This is definitely a hipster bar. But with that set-back, it is actually pretty cheap to drink here and socialize with the very open crowd. So open that the bathroom is closeted behind a linen cloth on a rope. Even so, it's definitely a good place to switch it up some nights. If you are bar hopping down Main Street, it just makes sense to go inside and most likely see a live show playing. 

Warren's Inn Map It
307 Travis St.
713-247-9207

With a great jukebox and strong cocktails, Warren's Inn is a staple on the Houston downtown scene.  Whether you're heading to the Astros game, grabbing drinks with co-workers or hitting the town with friends, you're sure to feel welcome at this laid-back watering hole.

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