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We scouted Rochester for bars with unique experiences and here is what we found: 

Abilene Bar and Lounge 

153 Liberty Pole Way Roc 

Rochester’s “Home of Roots” since 2008 is named after the Dave Alvin song (rather than the city in Texas). A live music venue with a nice outside deck (weather permitting). Sports reasonable drink prices. Upstairs Lounge Area is available to rent.
Warning: Vaccination Card required to enter.  

Bar Bantam 

1 South Clinton Ave Roc  

A spacious 2,100 sq. ft. all-day eatery providing chef-driven cuisine.  Located in the lobby of the Metropolitan it has a sexy big city vibe. Hosts a “Patio Picnic” Summer Series with food and drink pairings served up outdoors.  

Brick & Ivy 

819 S. Clinton Ave. Roc 

The name conveys a combo of masculine and female energies. Brick & Ivy has a nice ambiance and vibe that is perfect for a date night or an outing with friends. Located where the South Wedge and Swillburg neighborhoods meet.  

Lux Lounge 

666 South Ave. Roc 

Located in the South Wedge neighborhood with an outdoor space. Hosts events like 80’s Night, Floorwax Dance Party, Friday Slap-Happy Hour, etc. See their website: for more details. 

Radio Social 

20 Carlson Rd. Roc 

Enjoy this recreational hub with 34 bowling lanes, lounge areas, a variety of indoor and outdoor games. Features a Middle-Eastern Restaurant, pizza counter, craft cocktail bar and whiskey bar. 

Riot Room 

350 East Ave. Roc 

A bar smash room combo. In that, I mean a place to drink and to yield a sledgehammer and smash things. If you have some pent-up energy or want to host a unique event for a flat fee of $450 you can host 30 friends for a 90-min. car smash. See the website  for details on a wide variety of packages starting at: $24-$450 

Rochester Beer Park 

375 Averill Ave. Roc 

This RV Park-themed bar in the South Wedge Neighborhood is a spacious, unique place to hang out and enjoy a beer and live music that feels like a perpetual summertime experience. 

Side Bar 

242 South Ave. Roc 

A laid-back bar with outdoor patio space and hookah. Dubbed Rochester’s “Home to the world-famous loaded jerk chicken fries”.  Have a cocktail and some soul food served up while listening to hip hop, reggae, and r&b for a unique experience. 

Skylark Lounge 

40 S. Union St. Roc 

Serving up balls…meatballs that is!  A three-step process ordered bar side. 1.Choose a style: The Balls+1 side, The Hero, or The Slider 2. Choose a ball: The Traditional, Tequila Pork Ball, The Spicy Chicken or The Veggie 3. Choose a Sauce: Classic Marinara, Parmesan Cream. Buffalo Sauce, Roasted Red Pepper, or Pesto. The word is they are delish as are the deep-fried mashed potatoes.  

Swan Dive 

289 Alexander St. Roc 

Hosting an eye-popping retro-vibe that makes you feel like you’ve been transported to Miami in the 50’s. Beverages served for large groups in carafes or pitchers, a rotation of $10 cocktails and drafts offered from $4-$9. An Italian-inspired menu sports delicious pizza and fun items like a foot-long hotdog or double-decker burger and handmade mozzarella sticks. 


177 St. Paul St. Roc 

A unique welcoming experience serving up small plates or main course sizes. Beautiful atmosphere, Spanish music, and a great outdoor courtyard patio space to relax and unwind in. 

The Angry Goat Pub  

938 Clinton Ave. S. Roc 

Enjoy pub food in a relaxed Swillburg neighborhood bar. Check out the website: for food and drink menus as well as daily specials. Monday night is Dead Night great for Grateful Dead fans. 

The Beer Market 

1401 Mt. Hope Ave. Roc 

The Beer Market is part of the Beerhead franchise, with over 300 beers. It is a great place to sample a brew from another zip code, state, or foreign land. They also have small-batch bourbon, whiskey, or specialty cocktails and a small food selection as well. 

The Daily Refresher  

293 Alexander St. Roc 

Whiskey fans will enjoy the city’s largest selection here at a “vintage-chic cocktail spot” with unique upstairs/downstairs vibes. 

The Spirit Room 

139 State St. Roc 

Embracing the weird and rich history of Rochester, The Spirit Room gives a nod to all the odd little-known facts of our city. Hosting: Poetry& Pie, impromptu jam sessions, performance art and Tarot card readings (provided on Wednesday nights). 

The Vesper 

1 Capron St Roc 

Tucked away in the Washington Square Community in the historic Capron building you will find this Gastropub & Oyster Bar. A hidden gem boasting the best place for raw oysters in town. 

Washington Square

Rochester, NY has many beautiful bars to explore. Get out there and get exploring!

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