Have you ever walked into a bar, looked around, and thought, “Wow, this place could really use some work?” or maybe “This bar is really one of a kind" or even "I can't believe they're playing that song”? If the answer is yes to any of the above, chances are you were in a dive bar — and if we had to guess, you were probably about to experience a night you would never forget. Of course, if this place was a true dive, with low enough prices for the alcohol, you might have ended up wishing you could forget it, or not remembering it at all.
Even though we’ve rounded up the best dives before, the stories, drink prices, and crazy characters from these places are so unique that we had to do it again. Now, we’re excited to announce our 2015 edition of America’s 25 Best Dive Bars.
In order to compile our list, we rounded up a short list of more than 100 of the ultimate dive bars in America and ranked them based off of four categories we thought defined what makes a bar a dive: First, they had to have a jukebox (a good jukebox). Then, we checked to see if they have ultimate “time-wasters,” such as pool, darts, or karaoke. Next, we took a look at food and drink prices. And finally we considered that intangible, overall character. Using these criteria, we narrowed the number down to 25.74
This year’s results included bars from all over the country, ranging from places as far apart as Third Street Dive in Louisville, Kentucky, and the Salty Dawg Saloon, in Homer, Alaska. Our top five spots alone include cities from almost every region in the United States.
A true dive bar will have the cheapest beers in town, a clientele of colorful (sometimes questionable) characters, and something a little quirky to set it apart. Read on to see our list of America’s best dive bars for 2015.