The best thing about Kansas City bars, simply put, is the variety. You’ve got everything from low-lit jazz clubs to trendy alehouses bringing you tastes from around the globe. I’m here to dish the dirt on where you need to head for a cracking drink and killer atmosphere.
Buckle up, buckle in, and whatever you do, turn your Uber app on standby—things are about to get boozy. In this article, we are going to be looking at the best bars in Kansas City; from the new bars in Kansas City that have started getting attention to established old bars in Kansas City. Let’s get started.
Table of Contents
11 Best Cool Bars in Kansas City To Try on Your Next Visit
1. The Monarch Cocktail Bar
By The Monarch Bar
Much like its namesake, The Monarch is nothing short of regal. It is also one of the most unique bars in Kansas City Situated in a glass-walled, cutting-edge building, this cocktail bar is all about elegance and sophistication. The mixologists here run the gamut from channeling their inner Salvador Dali to delivering old European classics with panache.
What makes them one of the best cocktail bars in Kansas City is their drinks. Their drink menu is, dare I suggest, a work of art that transforms cocktail-making into a theatrical extravaganza. Many consider it one of the best bars in Kansas City Downtown.
2. Swordfish Tom’s Gay & Lesbian Bar in Kanas
By Swordfish Tom’s
As elusive as the secretive sea creature itself, Swordfish Tom’s is buried like a hidden treasure deep in the heart of downtown Kansas City. A speakeasy by design, it’s cozy and intimate, and there’s nothing fishy about it, contrary to what the name might suggest. This one is certainly one of the best dive bars in Kansas City MO.
Their intoxicating concoctions boast rich, complex flavors and a vintage menu that pays homage to Prohibition’s complexity. Many might not know it, but if you are looking for the best gay bars in Kansas City, Missouri, or the best lesbian bars in Kansas City, or just the best bars in Kansas City for singles, then this is the one.
3. Boulevard Brewing Company’s Beer Hall
By Adam Sieff Local Guide
Now, if you’re less into mixology and more into straight-up good beer, I bow my head to you and point you in the direction of the Boulevard Brewing Company’s Beer Hall. High-beamed, cool, and industrial, this stunning space offers a fantastic panoramic view of the city.
It’s your chance to sip on some of Kansas City’s best craft beer while witnessing the brewing process firsthand. Many good critics have claimed it to be one of the best bars in Kansas City, even the best sports bar in Kansas City, Downtown.
4. The Kansas City Bier Company
By Rick Bame Local Guide
Fancy a taste of the German atmosphere without hopping onto a plane? Say ‘hallo’ to The Kansas City Bier Company. Not only do they tap into the traditional German brewing techniques, but they’re also dedicated to using authentic ingredients—giving you a genuinely frothy, European experience.
They also provide a spacious beer garden that hosts an array of local events. So not only do you sip on a fantastic “bier“, you get to soak up the local culture while you’re at it. What’s not to love?
5. Tom’s Town Distilling Co
By Tom’s Town Distilling Co.
From one Tom to another, we move to Tom’s Town Distilling Co. Offering a taste of the roaring twenties, this is a spot that reverberates with history and sheer class. Named after the notorious Kansas City political boss, Tom Pendergast, this distillery levels up the sass with a dash of old-world charm. From handcrafted spirits to artisan gins and bourbons, every pour promises an intimate experience that you sip on, savor, and remember.
6. KC Wineworks Kansas Bar
By Justin Knysz Local Guide
Think you’re more wine than beer or spirits? (I see you, fellow rosé enthusiast). KC Wineworks offers a collection of phenomenal wines produced from Missouri-grown fruit. Cultivating, harvesting, and winemaking—this family-run business is hands-on every step of the way, which can be tasted in each glass poured.
And with options like their crisp Chardonnay or a vibrant Rosé on the table, you might find it hard to leave. You will not forget this, as it is one of the best bars in Kansas City.
7. Green Lady Lounge
By Leland Turner Local Guide
Many a night at the Green Lady Lounge is an electrifying escapade into the pulsating heart of jazz. A trip here feels like a flirtation with another era of decadent chandeliers, scarlet red walls, and live jazz rhythm that could get even a statue jiving.
Offering a chic lounge vibe deep into the night, it’s your chance to enjoy some of the finest musicians in the city. Elevate your evening with a glass of scotch as the jazz fever sweeps you away. After all, jazz and Kansas City are a match made in heaven.
By Pete Romano Local Guide
It is difficult when you are competing to be one of the best bars in Kansas City, but Up-Down does it easily. Looking for a spot that throws you right back to the good old days of Street Fighter, Skee Ball, and ’80s music? Well, hello, Up-Down.
If you find joy in the twang of an old arcade game or the clank of a pinball machine—this place is your mecca. Pairing your childhood favorites with a mature selection of 50+ craft beers. It’s nostalgia served fresh, with a side of buzz.
9. Barrio KC
By Briarcliff Barrio
Barrio KC contends seriously for the crown of best tacos and tequila in Kansas City. And they pretty much live up to the hype. The place is vibrant, brimming with Latin funk and splashes of vivid color.
Think neon lights, funky wall art, and scrumptious Mexican fare. Wash it down with their flaming margaritas, and you’re all set for a night of fiesta and siesta.
10. Char Bar Gay Bar
Before we end this merry bar-hopping spree through Kansas City, let’s stop by Char Bar—a heavenly spot where craft cocktails meet mouth-watering BBQ. The exposed brick and wood accents lend to an ambiance that’s relaxed to the bone. As for their Meat & Bourbon list? Well, it’s borderline sacrilegious, it’s so good. It is also a famous gay bar in Kansas City, MO.
11. The Phoenix Cocktail Bar
By Steve .Vasquez
Rounding off our list is The Phoenix, a KC classic that blends blues music, cool cocktails, and a hearty portion of history. If you are looking for great blues bars in Kansas City, this is your stop. Whether you’re lounging indoors amidst vintage decor or soaking up some sun on their outdoor patio, the atmosphere here is always buzzing with life and rhythm. Plus, nothing screams cool like sipping a cocktail while tapping your foot to some live, soulful blues. With the great drinks and highfalutin crowd, it is one of the best upscale bars in Kansas City.
Our Final Words
To put it simply, KC’s is one of the top bars in Kansas City. Whether your poison is a finely poured glass of wine, a cocktail that verges on art, or a pint of cold, craft beer, Kansas City has a bar that has your name written all over it. It is also one of the best rooftop bars in Kansas City.
Do remember, though, that the best part about exploring a city’s drinking holes isn’t just the beverages—it’s the stories each place has to tell and the ones you’ll go on to regale.
So go forth, you brave bar explorer, and find your perfect spot amidst this vibrant flurry of city lights and clinking glasses. Extraschön, as our beer-brewing friends would say! These were the best bars in Kansas City, and we are sure that no matter what your taste is, you will certainly find them interesting and fun!