The Five Best Places to Grab a Drink in Atlanta

By: Lauren Panchley  – Health Policy & Management

It is a truth universally acknowledged, that grad school is stressful. Amidst the chaos of all your readings, papers, and group presentations, it’s important to make time for yourself and do things that make you happy. For my friends and me, that usually means enjoying a happy hour drink after class or scream-singing at a karaoke bar on a Friday night. If you have a similar approach to letting loose, then this post is for you! Below, find five of my favorite places around Atlanta to grab a drink (in no particular order).

  1. New Realm Brewing Company

New Realm has been one of my favorite spots in Atlanta since I first moved here last August. Located right along the Beltline and less than a five-minute walk from Ponce City Market, it’s the perfect place to grab a beer and enjoy Atlanta’s warm weather. There’s plenty of indoor seating and a food menu, as well as patio seating and an open-air bar on the second floor. New Realm serves all their own brews, and they change out what they have on tap pretty regularly. Plus, the views of downtown Atlanta from the second floor are some of the best in the city.

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  1. Dark Horse Tavern

Situated in the Virginia Highlands neighborhood, Dark Horse is the perfect place for karaoke lovers. The first floor is your standard bar with house music, but in the basement, a live band accompanies karaoke singers every night from 10:30pm-3:00am! Belting out a tune at Dark House is a true Atlanta bucket list item. But be warned: the line to get into the basement gets really long, really fast, so make sure to get their early or be prepared to grab a drink and wait!

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  1. 5 Paces Inn

5 Paces is one of my favorite places to listen to live music. It’s located in Buckhead, and it’s basically three bars in one, each of which are very different from one another. Furthest to the left is a bar with a DJ, live music, and a dance floor; in the middle is a dive bar with a jukebox frequently bumping out some oldies; and on the right is (my favorite) a bar with live music from local Atlanta artists. Each of the three bars are connected to one another, and there is also a large patio area in the back that can be accessed from each bar. 5 Paces is a lot of fun and has something for everyone!

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  1. Ladybird Grove and Mess Hall

Another Atlanta favorite of mine and countless others, Ladybird sits along the Beltline, about a minute’s walk from Krog Street Market. It’s the perfect spot for to grab a midday drink – many a Saturday afternoon has been spent under Ladybird’s famous yellow umbrellas. They have a wide variety of drink choices, as well as a brunch menu that is simply to die for. Ladybird draws people of all ages, and – objectively the best part – there are always people with their dogs there. Live, love, Ladybird, as they say.

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  1. Ormsby’s

Ormsby’s is one of the gems of Atlanta’s west side. In the lower level, you can find countless games – darts, pool, shuffleboard, and more. They have a great drink selection, and even better fries (pro tip: order them with a side of ranch). Ormsby’s is the perfect place to visit with a group – good music, good company, and great games! It’s also walking distance from a Cook Out, which makes for an excellent late-night snack.

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Happy Drinking!