A good dive bar is where you really get to know a city. It’s where the locals bring their dogs, wet their whistles and catch up on Asheville happenings. The drinks are strong, the beer is cold and the atmosphere is low key. We’ve rounded up 15 Asheville dive bars you won’t want to miss!
Located Downtown, Broadway’s is a gem of a dive bar. If you’re looking for a varied beer selection and a welcoming and comfortable atmosphere, look no further. On the weekends, this dive bar turns into a party, perfect for capping the evening off with some dancing. The pool tables, jukebox, and two story patio gives you plenty of ways to enjoy the night.
Located in West Asheville, Double Crown is known for its relaxed New Orleans inspired atmosphere, with a variety of cocktails. With an extensive liquor selection, the bartenders aim to please, especially if you’re a Bourbon drinker. The Christmas lights hang year-round, creating a fun ambiance while you sip and mingle at diner-style booths. Sunday night Karaoke is a must!
Located in the River Arts District, Crucible is one of Asheville’s newer dive bars. Located in a charming old building, it stands out among it’s neighbors as a simple, lower ticket place to get a good drink. The bartenders are friendly and knowledgeable about cocktails. And they also have a small craft beer and wine selection. We recommend the Witch’s Blood cocktail which consists of fernet, blood orange, and named to perfection. It’s a must try.
Located downtown, Tiger Mountain is fun, diverse, and playful. The bartenders are always attentive and knowledgeable about cocktails and they have a nice beer selection, including some rare stuff like Old Speckled Hen. And, like any good dive bar, there are plenty of board games to get into and there’s always a dance party brewing. And before you leave, don’t forget to try the photo booth.
Located downtown, Lazy Diamond is the sister bar to Double Crown in West Asheville. The ambiance is similar: relaxed with Christmas lights strewn everywhere and wall and ceiling decor that will keep your eyes entertained. The bartenders are welcoming and chatty, and the drink specials are excellent! Wednesday night is karaoke, a local favorite.
Located on the edge of West Asheville, Burger Bar is a local crowd pleaser. Despite it’s name, there are no burgers or any other food here, which has become a local running joke. Established as Asheville’s oldest bar, this no frills dive bar delivers strong drinks, cold beer and local charm with history. There’s a pool table and games if you’re feeling competitive, and karaoke is every Wednesday!
Located in West Asheville, Desoto Lounge is a great dive bar with pinball, foosball and other games. The drinks are stiff and the food menu is satisfying. We recommend the Cuban sandwich or the cheese tray to have along with your cocktails. They also have brunch on the weekends, under $10. For other brunch spots under $10, check out our round up.
Located smack dab in the center of downtown, The Vault is a favorite watering hole and home to what most locals consider to be the best burger in Asheville. When the nearby restaurants close, you’ll find industry workers and foodies capping off the night here. You can get a 20oz beer here on the cheap, or a well made martini. It has something for everyone, including the bustle of downtown all around you.
Located on the East side of Asheville, Root Bar is a staple. This dive bar is a no frills, cash only joint with outdoor botchy ball, corn hole, pool and other bar games. With regular live music, friendly bartenders and low priced drinks, it’s home to many east side Ashevillians. The parkway is close by if you want to catch a hike before hitting the bar. Los Tacotes food truck has a regular schedule at Root Bar and definitely worth checking out.
Located in West Asheville, The Odditorium is a dive bar, as well as a venue for shows. Donning a punk rock vibe, this bar is home to a smorgasbord of events (live music, comedy, trivia, poetry, art shows, burlesque shows and dance parties, to name a few). True to it’s name, you’ll find yourself mingling with a variety of good folks and intriguing events that are delightfully odd!
Ole Shakey’s Getaway
Located directly on the French Broad River, Ole Shakey’s has been beloved by locals for many years. It’s exactly what you expect when you think of a dive bar. It has a tiki vibe with live music, open mic, pool tables, darts, rootball and karaoke on Thursdays. Not to mention their fun drinks like the Pina Colada slushy. The staff is always wonderful and you feel right at home. And don’t miss their Limo shuttle, a la the 90’s, that runs Tuesdays, Fridays and Saturdays.
Located just down from Pritchard Park, the Yacht Club is a grungy dive bar that’s been an Asheville favorite for many years. With a tiki bar vibe and lots of flare, the Yacht Club is a fun, low key place for drinks or people watching on their outdoor bar. The drinks are consistently good, along with their bartenders. Order their famous pitcher of tater tots and enjoy the friendly environment.
Located north of downtown, Frazier’s Tavern is a smaller, neighborhood dive bar. It’s a great, low key place to play free pool, ping pong or darts. The TV’s play football and the jukebox is stocked with tunes to keep you entertained. Striking up conversation with regulars comes easy and the back porch is comfy. Frazier’s has regular trivia nights, theme nights and holiday parties. The drinks are affordable and they even allow you to bring your own food in, as they don’t serve a full bar menu.
A hidden gem in the River Arts District, Guitar Bar is an eclectic, intimate joint that’s full of soul and an artsy atmosphere. Being located within a thriving art scene is reflected in it’s collected art work and community. The regular live music calendar includes jazz, classical, acoustic, blue grass, and blues. On Sundays they have a regular potluck, inviting musicians to come enjoy the musical community and share food. They also have Thursday night improv! There is something happening every night of the week at Guitar Bar.
Feature Image Credit: Double Crown