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Woodrow's, and it's brothers: Little Woodrow's, are a collective social nightlife institution in Houston. Perhaps the best one of all has recently opened downtown near Minute Maid Park and Dynamo Stadium and near the Warehouse Live music venue. Stop in an hour before your concert starts and relax at the beautiful Texas bar; or grab a table in the beer garden. Watch several games on flat screens while lounging in the insanely comfortable sofas. Unlike other locations, this one makes cocktails to go along with their Woodrow's-standard dozens of beers on tap. This place has everything you need, so stop by after work. -Adam Rosen
Looking for somewhere different to hang with your buds? Try The Maple Leaf Pub in Midtown. This place is overflowing with north-of-the-border character. Switch up your steady diet of domestic and Mexican beers to a frosty Canadian Molson and catch a hockey game with some friendly folks. If one of your friends gets too rowdy, you can put them in the penalty box. There is no better watering hole in the city during the Stanley Cup. The crowd, much like what can be found in Canada, is diverse and super pleasant.
When you think of a typical, road side ice house and you don't picture the West Alabama Ice House, then stopping by is an imperative so you can see what an real ice house is. Located just East of Shepherd, this open air bar provides simplicity in its offerings, and that is what makes the joint so successful. If you want beer, if you want to visit, if you want to sit on a picnic table and watch commuters struggle by wistfully looking in, maybe some live music and a hot-dog, then this is definitely the place. -Richard Hannah
Central Texas is a relaxing place. If you don't have the time to make a road trip, treat yourself to Canyon Creek Cafe. With such a laid back atmosphere and friendly folks, you're liable to go for lunch and stay through happy hour. Enjoy good ole American classics and Texas faves, like insanely good burgers and fat sandwiches. The choices seem endless and the taste is heavenly. Feel like something lighter? The salads rock and roll, like the Gonzo Garbonzo with plump chickpeas, avocado, crisp sprouts, and tangy feta. Choose from over 30 beers to wash it down while watching a ballgame and chatting with friends. They're open early for breakfast on the weekends too. -Adam Rosen