Welcome to Grand Rapids, Michigan – a city renowned for its vibrant nightlife and affectionately known as “Beer City USA” for the past decade.
With an impressive 13 must-try breweries and bars throughout the city, there’s something here to please every palate.
Whether you’re a fan of craft beer or prefer sipping on expertly mixed cocktails at trendy establishments, this list of the 13 Best Bars in Grand Rapids will guide you through some top-rated spots serving up delicious drinks and memorable experiences.
The 13 Best Bars In Grand Rapids
Founders Brewing Co.
As a passionate lover of craft beer, I had the pleasure of visiting Founders Brewing Co., one of best bars in Grand Rapids, Michigan. This highly rated brewery is renowned for producing top-quality beer that appeals to both locals and tourists alike.
Visiting on a weekend allowed me to partake in some exciting events hosted by this iconic bar. While there, I learned about Grand Rapids Beer Tours’ walking tour through the city’s top breweries – including Founders itself! This gave me an insightful look into their beer production process and let me taste test some incredible brews during a guided brewery tour.
Brick And Porter
As a Grand Rapids local and alcohol enthusiast, I absolutely love visiting Brick and Porter. Not only is it ranked as one of the top 10 cocktail bars in town, but it also features an upscale pub atmosphere perfect for socializing with friends or enjoying a nice meal.
My favorite aspect about this place has to be their ever-changing draft selection – with different beers on tap every day, you’ll never get bored! Plus, situated right in the heart of downtown Grand Rapids makes it convenient for bar-hopping or catching some live music nearby.
Whether you’re there for happy hour specials or hunting down signature drinks crafted by skilled mixologists, Brick and Porter has everything you might need in terms of quality craft beer and exceptional cocktails.
Blue Dog Tavern
Blue Dog Tavern stands out as one of the best bars in Grand Rapids, a must-visit spot for anyone seeking an exceptional dining experience and local hangout.
What makes Blue Dog Tavern truly special is its commitment to top-notch food and drink. The establishment originally earned fame with its signature hot dogs and tater tots, which often feature innovative twists that keep patrons coming back for more! Owner Fred Mackraz envisions bar expansion plans involving the site of the former Guest House next door, promising even more delightful offerings down the road.
Gippers Sports Bar & Grill
I highly recommend Gippers Sports Bar & Grill for those seeking a fun and casual dining experience in Cascade, Grand Rapids. With two bars and a large outdoor patio, it’s the perfect spot to catch up with friends over burgers and craft beers while enjoying the game day atmosphere.
Gippers offers weekly events and happy hour specials every day from 11-7pm, making it an affordable option for those who want to save some cash but still have a great time.
Whether you’re looking for sports bar vibes or outdoor seating with live entertainment, Gippers has got you covered.
Reserve Wine & Food
If you’re looking for a top-rated wine bar in Grand Rapids, Reserve Wine & Food is definitely one to check out. They pride themselves on their world-class wine list and rotating menu made with locally sourced ingredients.
In fact, USA Today named them one of the country’s top 10 great places that serve wine flights back in 2012.
What sets Reserve Wine & Food apart from other bars is not just the quality of their drinks and food but also their commitment to providing unbiased reviews from customers.
Logan’s Alley is a favorite neighborhood pub and dive bar in Grand Rapids, Michigan. As one of the best bars in the city, it stands out for its craft beer selection, exemplary service and community involvement.
The bar boasts an extensive menu featuring local eats and hangover food like their famous tots and juicy burgers that were featured on Michigan’s Best Local Eats.
What sets Logan’s Alley apart from other American bars in the area is its commitment to improving customer experience by providing exceptional service.
Uccello’s Ristorante, Pizzeria & Sports Lounge
As someone who enjoys good food, a lively sports bar atmosphere, and reasonably priced pizza puffs, I can confidently say that Uccello’s Ristorante, Pizzeria & Sports Lounge is one of the best bars in Grand Rapids.
With five locations in West Michigan area, Uccello’s scores high points for offering outdoor patio dining, casual and formal dining options as well as an energetic sports lounge.
The restaurant does not disappoint when it comes to gourmet pizzas and appetizers like Italian fries or stuffed mushrooms. They also have happy hour specials on select items making your visit even more enjoyable.
Live sports events are always playing on TV screens throughout the restaurant while you indulge in their craft beer selection or cocktails from their well-stocked bar menu.
I have to tell you, as someone who loves a good craft beer, Brewery Vivant is definitely one of my top picks for bars in Grand Rapids. The atmosphere of the place alone is worth a visit with its cozy setting and rustic decor.
Not only was Brewery Vivant America’s first LEED-certified brewery, but they also source ingredients locally and use eco-friendly practices throughout their operation.
And let me tell you, that commitment to quality shows in their award-winning beer selection! From their farmhouse ale Farm Hand to the tart and refreshing Wizard Burial Ground sour, there’s something for every type of beer lover here.
Plus, their from-scratch menu features culturally inspired dishes made with fresh ingredients that pair perfectly with your pint.
The Mitten Brewing Company
As someone who enjoys a good beer and pizza combo, I highly recommend stopping by The Mitten Brewing Company in Grand Rapids. This microbrewery offers handcrafted beers that are sure to please any beer enthusiast.
Their American IPAs have a perfect balance of hops and malt, while their Peanuts & Crackerjack stout is a unique and tasty treat. But what sets The Mitten apart from other breweries in the area is its vintage baseball theme – it’s like stepping back in time! From the decor to the names of their beers, everything ties back to America’s favorite pastime.
In addition to great beer and food, The Mitten Brewing Company has a welcoming and local feel that makes you want to sit back, relax, and enjoy your surroundings.
Thornapple Brewing is a must-visit spot on the list of the Best Bars in Grand Rapids. This brewery offers handcrafted beer, cocktails, and delicious pub grub that are sure to please craft beer enthusiasts and foodies alike.
One exciting feature of Thornapple Brewing is their trivia night events, where you can test your knowledge with friends over a cold pint. Their menu also includes beer tasting flights, giving you the chance to try new flavors and discover your favorites.
Arvon Brewing Co.
I have to say, Arvon Brewing Co. is definitely one of my top picks when it comes to bars and breweries in Grand Rapids. Located in downtown on S. between Franklin and Hall streets, this spot has a refreshing tap list of New England craft beer that rotates regularly.
It’s no surprise that Brewery Stars has rated Arvon Brewing Co. as one of the best breweries in Grand Rapids with a solid 4.2223 rating out of 5 stars! If you’re looking for a place to grab some delicious beer while enjoying the vibrant atmosphere of downtown Grand Rapids, then make sure to add Arvon Brewing Co.
The B.O.B. is a popular entertainment and restaurant space in downtown Grand Rapids that attracts visitors looking for some of the best bars and nightlife attractions in the city center.
This venue combines dining, dancing, live music performances, comedy shows, and sports events all under one roof making it a top-rated destination for locals and tourists alike.
As part of the list of best breweries and bars in Grand Rapids, The B.O.B.’s reputation as an iconic stop on any pub crawl itinerary speaks to its popularity within the craft beer culture community.
With its wide selection of local brews on tap from renowned Michigan breweries like New Holland Brewing Company or Founders Brewing Co., there’s always something exciting happening at this lively venue.
The Meanwhile Bar
The Meanwhile Bar is a must-visit spot for anyone looking for a lively atmosphere and unique drinks in Grand Rapids. Located in the former site of Two Stans Bar, The Meanwhile has become one of the best bars to enjoy a night out in the city.
One of the highlights of visiting The Meanwhile is its spacious beer garden that boasts arcade games and ample outdoor seating. This area provides an excellent social gathering spot where you can catch up with friends while sipping your drink of choice or trying out some pinball games.
In conclusion, Grand Rapids is a city that takes its drinking establishments seriously. From beer and wine bars to craft breweries and sports lounges, there’s something for everyone.
The 13 best bars we’ve listed above are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to exploring the city’s lively bar scene.