50 2nd Ave. N.
Minneapolis, MN 55401
One of the more recent additions to Minneapolis’ North Loop neighborhood, the Bachelor Farmer has been one of Minneapolis’ most talked-about new restaurants. Downstairs from the restaurant, however, Marvel Bar has gained its own notoriety for the unique, expertly made cocktails and the colorful, eclectic lounge in which to enjoy them. With seasonal and house-made ingredients, and a little extra TLC from the bartenders, the drinks are a one-of-a-kind experience. But first you have to find the obscure purple door to get inside.
Graves 601 Hotel
6011st Ave. N.
Minneapolis, MN 55403
At the base of the impressive Graves Hotel lies one of the earliest members of Minneapolis’ craft cocktail craze and one of the city’s coolest lounges to boot. Bradstreet Crafthouse is a state-of-the-art time capsule in which to enjoy Gatsby-esque elegance while sipping on a Manhattan. Whatever your drink of choice, the unflappable mixologists guarantee to make it just right. Just sit back and let yourself be transported to simpler times.
289 E. 5th St.
St. Paul, MN 55101
It seems we can’t go two minutes without hearing something about how cool Saint Paul’s Lowertown neighborhood is. Well, if you still need convincing, the lounge at Heartland should do the trick. The loft-style lounge is dimly lit and sexy, spacious and comfortable for a group of friends out celebrating, but still cozy enough to enjoy a romantic nightcap with a loved one. And be sure to arrive hungry. The menu, comprised entirely of ingredients sourced from Minnesota and Wisconsin farms, is one of the very best in town.
231 E. Superior St.
Duluth, MN 55802
Like Winterfell in the “Game of Thrones” television series, Duluth is the last metropolitan outpost before heading into the wilds of the north. Blackwater Lounge, located in Duluth’s Old Downtown, offers warm hospitality and a creative menu with items like gouda fondue and fried lobster. The city hosts dozens of events and festivals during the summer and this is the place you want to find yourself for late-night drinks and live jazz. If you’re ever heading further north to the Iron Range or the Boundary Waters, stop by the Blackwater Lounge for one last cocktail before heading into the wilderness.
Minneapolis, MN 55414
An underground lounge hidden beneath popular Asian restaurant Ginger Hop, Honey meshes candlelit charm with New York City swagger to create one of Northeast Minneapolis’ most popular nightlife destinations. Live music is offered most nights of the week, and the unpretentious drink selections will keep both your top-shelf martini and your PBR-drinking friends happy. The food menu as well has something for everyone, from hot wings to salmon du jour.
Adrian Schramm is a resident Saint Paul writer with a passion for all things local. Through his work with Saint Paul Almanac and Minneapolis Examiner at Examiner.com, as well as in the kitchens of bars and restaurants around town, he has discovered what truly makes the Twin Cities tick.