They call themselves the "World's Darkest Nightclub" and they're not referring so much to the lighting situation as to the prevalent aura. On the ground-floor of a 1920s-era hotel, the club has many vestiges of its historic past coupled with the dark and dank ambiance appropriate to its alternative concept. This funky spot features an eclectic array of live music, from acoustic to alternative dance, which is perfectly suited to its dramatically diverse and energetically eccentric clientèle.
Consistently voted Tucson's top gay bar over the past two decades, IBT's promises customers a fun and memorable night out. Most come to IBT's for the dancing, with a DJ spinning tunes Tuesday through Sunday and a second DJ spinning Wednesday through Saturday nights. IBT's also hosts a very popular drag show every week. Don't forget about the great drink specials that are offered here, as well as their selection of delicious desserts.
Voted Best Cocktail Bar in the local media, The Shelter Cocktail Lounge has done everything to maintain its status as the first choice for martini drinkers in Tucson. Its beer bar serves nine different brands of microbrews, including Tucson's own Nimbus Brewery. If you are looking for mass-produced brews like Buds and Schlitz here, you better look elsewhere. Tt is famous for its kitsch decor dedicated to the celebrities of the 1960s. All in all, this is a great place to grab a drink and strike up a conversation.
La Cocina is a great place to pick for lunch after strolling around the downtown arts district. Situated in the shaded courtyard of the Old Town Artisans complex, this grill and restaurant offers Sonoran-style dishes in a 19th century cantina setting. Locals like to take out-of-town visitors to this pleasant place in order to show off their city. The ambiance is that of an 1890-style cantina, combined with patio dining in a beautiful courtyard setting with flowers and ponds. The fare is mostly Mexican, but does include dishes like the Fettucine con Pollo. Beer and wine is also available.
Fashioned after an old-town public house, the Union Public House is just that. Replete with all the accouterments that go into making a pub, except with a more modern approach, this family-friendly pub serves local brews and whiskey, alongside delicious pub-grub that you can't keep your hands off. To add to that, there are TV screens for when your favorite game is on. Happy hours continue late into the night, when locals still trickle in for some of their famous French Dip Sliders and Cabbage Wraps. Mornings bring hearty brunches, while an alfresco dining area lets you sit in the morning sun mull over the day to come.
Barrio Brewing Co. offers a wide variety of fresh microbrews. They have a dozen of their own Barrio Brewing microbrews on tap, including their very easy-to-drink Barrio Blonde, which has a light malt flavor. If you want some food to go along with your beer, then you are in luck. Barrio Brewing Co. features a food menu decked with options like burgers and selections of very tasty Mexican bites, including tacos and quesadillas.
The cuisine is international, the ambiance is totally charged and the name is Feast. What more do you need to have a whale of time especially where your appetite is concerned. The chef has come up with some interesting dishes that could leave you asking for more. If you want to go for the greens, then take a pick from the Mixed Green Salad or the Smoked Trout with Watermelon and Avocado salad. Enjoy a Roast Pork Sandwich or the popular Feast Grilled Cheese. If that's not all, then go for the Curried Shrimp or New York Grilled Steak. With so much and more on offer out here, you are ensured a great time with flavors you will cherish and prices that are friendly.
Kon Tiki is truly a departure from the abundance of Mexican and Continental American restaurants around Tucson. It's the only major restaurant in Tucson featuring Hawaiian cuisine. Two flaming torches and a wooden tribal figurine guard the front entrance and the interior walls are fashioned with bamboo sticks, as expected. The lighting is subdued and intimate. Traditional Hawaiian cuisine is served including plentiful teriyaki chicken dishes, with vegetable medleys and pineapple garnishes. And yes, the restaurant serves a variety of fruity alcoholic beverages with paper umbrellas.
Considered Tucson's favorite live-music destination and burlesque performance space, Surly Wench Pub is a veritable one-stop-shop when it comes to entertainment. A well-rounded combination of good food, a fantastic selection of drinks coupled with the city's best DJs spinning the latest tunes, there's little that could go wrong here. The bar has daily specials that feature hand-crafted cocktails at a great price, scrumptious bar-bites, karaoke, theme-nights and regular events make this place one of the hippest spots in town.
If you're looking to relax in a comfy atmosphere after a busy day of downtown sightseeing or shopping and dining on Fourth Avenue, make sure to visit Che's Lounge. The selection of beers, both domestic and imported, is excellent, including Guinness and Bass from the tap. The wine list is quite extensive, featuring a good sampling of Chilean wines as well as Chardonnays and Merlots from California and France, and a glass of house wine is offered at a very reasonable price. Live musical entertainment featuring local bands is provided every Friday and Saturday nights and there's never a cover charge.