Wisconsin is known for its vibrant bar scene, with a wide variety of establishments offering unique experiences.
From college staples to pre-Prohibition haunts, Wisconsin has every type of venue imaginable for a memorable day and night out.
In this article, we will explore some of the best bars in Wisconsin, including iconic bars, bars that make the old fashioned an experience, and hidden gems that are worth seeking out.
Top 16 Best Bars In Wisconsin
The Sofie is a cocktail lounge located in downtown Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
It is known for its handcrafted cocktails, including classics such as Mojitos, Daiquiris, and Old Fashioneds.
The wine selection is also highly regarded. The Sofie has a social club atmosphere with a neighborhood vibe.
It is located in Cathedral Square in the Juneau Town neighborhood of Milwaukee. The Sofie is a great place to meet friends before or after dinner.
Mars Cheese Castle
Mars Cheese Castle is a specialty food store, delicatessen, and taproom located in Kenosha, Wisconsin. It was founded in 1947 and has been an icon in Wisconsin for over 60 years.
The store is situated on I-94 between Milwaukee and Chicago and is popular among Wisconsin visitors.
It has been called a “cheese landmark”, “one of Wisconsin’s most recognizable cheese stores”, and “an icon for generations of I-94 travelers”.
Mars Cheese Castle offers a variety of consumable products, including hundreds of cheese varieties, wine, sausage, and a deli & full bar. The store also has a small souvenir shop. It is open every day from 9am to 7pm.
Nelsen’s Hall is a historic tavern located on Washington Island, at the tip of the Door Peninsula in Wisconsin.
– It was established in 1899 and is a historic landmark on the island.
– It is known for being the largest purveyor of Angostura Bitters in the world.
– The tavern has a home-style menu that includes famous prime rib, steaks, chicken and pasta dishes, as well as daily specials, homemade pizza, soup, and salad bar.
– Nelsen’s Hall has a turn-of-the-century atmosphere and is a popular destination for tourists visiting Washington Island.
– The tavern is also known for its haunted history, with reports of ghost sightings and unexplained occurrences.
If you’re planning a visit to Washington Island, Nelsen’s Hall is a must-see destination for history buffs, foodies, and anyone interested in the paranormal.
Tribute Brewery and Taphouse
Tribute Brewery and Taphouse is located at 1106 Bluebird Road, Eagle River, Wisconsin 54521.
It is a brewery and taphouse that features 12 Wisconsin craft beers on tap, all stainless steel draft system, and rotating guest beer selection.
The taphouse is open with limited seating, and you must be 21+ to be in the taphouse. Under 21 and pets are allowed on the patio.
The taphouse hours are Tuesday to Friday from 3 pm to 9 pm and Saturday from 1 pm to 9 pm. It is closed on Sundays and Mondays.
Tribute Brewery and Taphouse is a wonderful asset to any Eagle River trip, and it is pretty great for those who live there. Visitors can check their Facebook page for a current menu.
Ho-Chunk Gaming Wittenberg
Ho-Chunk Gaming Wittenberg is a casino and hotel located in Wittenberg, Wisconsin.
– Gaming: Ho-Chunk Gaming Wittenberg offers over 800 slot games, including over 100 progressive machines.
– Location: The casino is conveniently located off of Hwy 45, 1 mile north of Hwy 29.
– Hotel: Ho-Chunk Gaming Wittenberg offers beautifully appointed accommodations to host business meetings, parties, and other events. Guests can book a standard room or a suite, and there are various packages available that include Rewards Play and food discounts.
– Events: Ho-Chunk Gaming Wittenberg hosts various events throughout the year, including concerts and New Year’s Eve parties.
– Dining: The casino offers various dining options, including a snack bar serving light fare and drinks, as well as several food and beverage venues.
– Parking: The casino offers free valet and plenty of on-site parking.
– Pets: According to Yelp, dogs are not allowed at Ho-Chunk Gaming Wittenberg.
The Old Fashioned
The Old Fashioned is a Wisconsin-themed, retro-style tavern that offers beers, brats, and cheese curds, all sourced in-state.
The restaurant is located at 23 North Pinckney Street, Madison, Wisconsin 53703. The Wisconsin Old Fashioned is a variation on the classic Old Fashioned cocktail, made with brandy and lemon-lime soda.
The typical Old Fashioned recipe uses bourbon mixed with a muddled sugar cube and bitters.
The Wisconsin Old Fashioned is so popular that it became the State drink, and it comes with lots of variations, including Sweet, Sour, Press, and Soda.
The garnishes for a Wisconsin Old Fashioned range from standard to downright intriguing, including orange slices, cocktail cherries, olives, and even pickled Brussels sprouts.
The Old Fashioned also offers a variety of food options, including sandwiches like the Wisconsin Burger, Spicy Burger, and Beef Tenderloin Sandwich, as well as a Double Brat, Vegetable Sandwich, and Tuna Salad Sandwich.
The restaurant has received positive reviews on Yelp, with many customers praising the food and drinks.
The Safe House
The SafeHouse is a spy-themed restaurant and bar located in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. It has a quirky, dimly lit interior and offers creative cocktails and casual fare.
The restaurant also features missions and scavenger hunts for junior spies, as well as CODE RED Club Nights and special events for adults.
To enter the SafeHouse, visitors must know the secret password, which is revealed on the restaurant’s website. The entrance is located behind the door marked International Exports, Ltd. .
The SafeHouse is open Monday through Thursday from 11:00 am to 10:00 pm, Friday and Saturday from 11:00 am to 12:00 am, and Sunday from 11:00 am to 8:00 pm.
It is rated 4.2 stars by 499 OpenTable diners and offers takeout and delivery options. The restaurant can also host private events such as birthdays, anniversaries, graduations, and corporate events.
It is known for its burgers, wings, and other bar food.
The bar is located at 1920 S Hastings Way, Eau Claire, WI 54701. Customers can order food from Wisco’s online through EatStreet.
PufferFish is a tiki bar located in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. It is situated on the rooftop of Hotel Metro and offers tropical drinks and cocktails.
PufferFish is located on the rooftop of Hotel Metro, Autograph Collection, at 411 E. Mason Street, Milwaukee, WI 53202. PufferFish is a tiki bar that offers tropical drinks and cocktails.
It was created by cocktail aficionado JC Cunningham and was originally a traveling tiki concept that launched three years ago as a pop-up. It has now found a permanent home atop Hotel Metro.
According to their Instagram page, PufferFish is open Wednesdays and Thursdays from 5pm to 12am, and Fridays and Saturdays from 5pm to 1am.
To contact PufferFish, you can call them at (414) 272-1937 or email them at [email protected].
Tied House Milwaukee
Tied House Milwaukee is a culinary craft cocktail bar located in Milwaukee’s Historic Third Ward. It was founded by husband and wife team Adam and Melissa Weber.
The bar has an exclusive feel when you walk in through the alley and then enter. It is a super fun cocktail spot that Milwaukee needed.
Tied houses flourished across Milwaukee thanks to local breweries, but their connection to the breweries changed after Prohibition.
Tied House Milwaukee is located at 124 North Water Street, Milwaukee, Wisconsin 53202.
Nine Below is an underground tavern located at 1905 E North Ave, Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
It is a build-your-own mini-golf bar that offers indoor, design-your-own mini-golf courses for ages 15 and up.
Nine Below is the world’s first and only build-your-own mini-golf tavern. Each round of mini-golf begins by building your own mini-golf hole with all of the props. The price is $20-$25 per person depending on the number of team members in your group.
The tavern is known for its cocktails and beer. Nine Below is located underneath Beans & Barley on Milwaukee’s East Side, and parking is available nearby.
Mad Planet is an enduring alternative rock dance club located at 533 E. Center St. Milwaukee, WI 53212.
It features hometown bands and national acts, as well as a retro night with DJs. The club is open on Fridays and Saturdays at 9:00 pm, and weeknight event times are to be announced.
Mad Planet also hosts events such as live music performances and DJ sets. The club has an Instagram account with 5327 followers, where they post photos and videos of their events.
According to Yelp, Mad Planet has 58 reviews and a rating of 4 stars out of 5.
The NorthSouth Club is a bar and event space located in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. It is situated in the vibrant Walker’s Point neighborhood.
The club features a full bar and semi-private event space in a spacious yet comfortable setting. It is a popular venue for events such as date nights, life celebrations, and corporate events.
The club offers a premium experience for groups, allowing them to feel like they are on vacation without ever leaving Milwaukee.
The NorthSouth Club has a rating of 4.7 out of 5 on Google Maps, with a total of 268 ratings.
Trailer Park Tavern
Trailer Park Tavern is a neighborhood tavern located in Milwaukee’s Bay View neighborhood at 2989 S. Kinnickinnic Ave. It was opened in 2019 by Jordon Bledsoe.
The bar is known for its dive bar atmosphere and serves frozen pizzas, Lunchables, and Twinkies. It is also home to the $350 Date Night Special.
The bar has TVs but does not take reservations. It is a popular spot for locals to gather, drink, socialize, and watch sports.
The Pharmacy Bar
The Pharmacy Bar is a bar located in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. It is situated inside the Crossroads Collective food hall at 2238 N.
Farwell Ave. The bar is known for serving up Milwaukee’s best cocktails, mocktails, beer, and wine.
In addition to serving drinks, The Pharmacy bar also sells its own bitters and infused spirits for home bartenders.
It is important to note that there is another bar called The Fharmacy Public House located in Lake Mills, Wisconsin, which is not the same as The Pharmacy Bar in Milwaukee.
The Pharmacy bar has a rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars on Google Maps, with a total of 15 ratings.
Foundation Bar is a festive haunt located in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. It has a Polynesian decor and a playful vibe, offering tropical drinks and an ample rum list.
The bar is known for its incredible selection of rum and great cocktails. The menu includes a variety of drinks, and the bar offers a rum list.
The bar is open daily from 4 pm to 12 midnight on Sunday to Thursday and from 4 pm to 2 am on Friday and Saturday. The address of the bar is 2718 N Bremen St, Milwaukee, WI 53212-2606.