Providence is definitely a place I call home. I spent four years living in Prov/going to school there so once I turned 21, I couldn’t wait to check out their bar scene. From mixology bars to music venues and clubs, Providence has it all. So check it out!
Wickenden Street Area:
Whisky Republic– This is a total college bro bar. A lot of people like it when they’re in college or very newly post grad because it’s full of drunken people and dancing. It’s also got a cool location right near the restaurant Al Forno’s and Hot Club!
The Hot Club– This place sits right on the harbor and overlooks the water on their outside bar. They also do industry nights for anyone who works in food service and puts their drinks at a discount!
Piano Bar– So. Much. Fun. This place has a cover most nights which makes it a little on the pricy side but it’s awesome for a friend’s birthday! Follow them on Facebook too, and you can get a free shot of the night! They’ll play anything you want if you tip them and you can also pay to have a message written on the board aka throw your friends number up to “have a good time”. Occasionally throughout the night, they also have a wheel to spin which makes you feel like you’re on Wheel of Fortune or Price is Right. But it might land on “give a lapdance to a stranger” or “Win $20!”. I’ve tended to find that the crowd there is on the older side but it’s still a blast regardless.
Federal Hill Area
Ogie’s Trailer Park– This just opened a couples months ago! Totally kitchsy and themed, I can’t wait to try it out again over the summer. They have a huge patio out back with firepits and cutouts of trailers to simulate a 50’s trailer park. Their menu is really simple but you gotta try their tater tots! You can’t go wrong!
The Avery– This place is one of the most hipster bars you’ll ever encounter. A little dark and a little speakeasy-esque, it’s got a real secretive kind of feel which is cool. Also, it’s right across the street from a North (a super great restaurant!) so put yourself on the waiting list there and grab a craft cocktail at The Avery!
The Eddy– Hands down, my all-time favorite craft cocktail/mixology bar. This place is so great despite it being super small. The bartenders are really knowledgeable so if you’re adventurous, try the bartender’s choice! You might get a drink that used egg as an emulsifier but trust them, it’s bound to be delicious! Or you can try their house punch for a cheaper drink!
G Pub/Providence G Rooftop– I have mixed feelings about this place. G Pub is underground and hidden which makes it pretty cool with the exception that when it gets full, you can’t hear shit down there. They do have a couple private rooms where they do parties or karaoke, so overall it’s pretty popular! G Pub is in the basement of an apartment complex but they also have a rooftop bar! It shows a beautiful view of the city and has tons of lounge chairs and couches however it’s on the pricy side. I almost felt too young for the crowd there but it was still a cool experience.
Congress– Across the street from G Pub, Congress is super low key and a definite spot for people in the industry to hang. It’s got good vibes with good people! Definitely a place I’d check out right in the middle of Provi.
Trinity Rep– This place has a great craft beer selection. It’s also two levels with billards in the basement. Food is decent too, so it makes a great place for a casual dinner!
Aruba Steve’s– Oh Lordy, this place. Across the street from the JWU downtown campus, this place is always crazy on the weekends but especially on Tuesdays. They do karaoke there every week and it’s so popular! The same old crazy man comes week after week to sing “New York New York” and he’s hilarious. Aruba’s also is known for their fishbowls! You can get individual fishbowls for about $14 and it probably equals 2 ½- 3 drinks worth of booze. Don’t order anything off of the menu though! I don’t trust their kitchen!
The Dorrance– OOOH YOU FANCY HUH. Never technically went to this place yet, however I’ve walked by it a thousand times. You always see bridal showers or just people dressed in suits there. Maybe I’ll go one day and pretend to be a real life adult who has their ish together.
Shark– This is a super trendy place up on Thayer Street which is right near Brown. They used to do hookah there but I’m not positive that they have the permits to do so anymore thanks to state ordinances. But they also do GIANT fishbowls but those are definitely to share!
The English Cellar– I’ve known the cellar to be packed wall to wall with all the “of age” college kids from RISD, Brown, JWU, etc. They also have pool tables and such in the back, but overall I’d consider this place to be semi-hipster. It’s definitely one of the bars that we considered one of our watering holes.
Tortilla Flats– Now this place brings back SO many memories. This was what I would’ve considered our real watering hole. We’d always snag a corner table, order pitchers of margaritas and get tons of nachos to share. I also went on a first date here once and sat around the bar which was also great because you can watch the tvs or people watch if it’s really dull! Their margs are really strong- so take that as a good or bad thing depending on your style!
I hope you enjoyed my incomplete list of bars around Providence that I frequented back in my college days! Providence will forever hold my heart so it’s great that it’s just a short drive from Boston! While you’re there, maybe you can hit up Allie’s Donuts like I had previously suggested! Have a great weekend and check back on Tuesday for another (non-Providence) blog about my post grad life!