Kansas City's Best Bars 2017
Raising Kansas City's nightlife one bar at a time
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Finding the best bar to escape the workweek monotony can be tough. Luckily we’ve got you covered. In the following pages, we’ve rounded up the best bars by neighborhood, and there’s something for everyone —whether you’re in search of a hangout where everyone knows your name, a spot to catch the game or to raise the bar on your nightlife. And it’s not to say that there aren’t other bars out there. This is just a taste of our top picks based on location. So raise your glass and propose a toast to 2017’s best bars!
Why you’re here: Run by Moxie Catering and new Golden Ox owners Jill Myers and Wes Gartner, Voltaire evokes literary themes and creates an intellectual ambiance with turn-of-the-century accouterments (think dark woods, tons of mirrors, bottom-lit bottles and music provided by an in-house record player). Amuse your bouche with expertly crafted house cocktails and find enlightenment through conversation and creative interaction.
What you’re having: A studious Kansas City Sour
1617 Genessee St. Kansas City, Mo., (816) 472-1200, voltairekc.com
Why you’re here: The Ship has been around for more than 60 years, having survived multiple captains, demolition, relocation and weathering a 10-year storm before making port in the heart of the West Bottoms. All walks of life come aboard this classic cocktail lounge — from politicians to plain folk — just to take in the decor, which looks and feels like you’re below deck on a real ship, right down to the hardwood floors, captain’s cabin and portholes.
What you’re having: Your favorite pour
1217 Union Ave., Kansas City, Mo., (816) 471-7447, theshipkc.com
Why you’re here: What started as a motorcycle club that occasionally threw parties on Union Avenue is now an upscale dive bar with a clubhouse feel. Its decor spans many a decade, featuring repurposed bar chairs from The Union, a pool table, and black velvet paintings of Elvis and Willie Nelson. Lucky Boys also pumps out a killer playlist, but it’s the brews and food you’re after. Line your stomach with bar snacks like mushroom gravy poutine and Louisville-style hot chicken, then wash it down with well cocktails or draft beer.
What you’re having: A rum and coke
1615 Genessee St. Kansas City, Mo., (816) 442-8131