If you’re looking for a little something different in terms of your weekend nights out on the town, or even your weekday happy hours, then a speakeasy is the perfect option for you. Speakeasies were hidden bars that were big in the 1920s during the prohibition era, and recently, modern versions have started to pop up. The Twin Cities is home to an excellent speakeasy scene, and you really can’t go wrong with any of them.
Here are seven of our favorite cocktail speakeasies in the Twin Cities, perfect for any occasion.
Known for great live music and drinks, the Green Lantern has a cozy ambiance. The name is taken from a speakeasy saloon from the 20s in St. Paul, where gangsters and police drank side-by-side and the owner, “Dapper” Dany Hogan acted as a liaison between the two to keep the peace. The legacy of the original Green Lantern lives on through the modern day version. The Cat’s Meow, The Fix Is In, and the Odds On Favorite are some of their best cocktails.
Volstead’s is known for its excellent ambiance to accompany their magnificent cocktails. In addition, in true speakeasy fashion, getting to Volstead’s takes a little effort on your part. You’ll go through an alley, into a dark corner, and underneath an alcove. But that’s half the fun! If you plan on stopping by for a drink, reservations are a good idea. Otherwise, you’ll have to spend a little time waiting outside before being let in. The door entrance has a small eye slot where a bouncer will greet you. But don’t worry, there is no password!
Marvel Bar is one of the most trendy speakeasies in the Twin Cities right now. Another spot where you have to work a little bit to find it. On weekdays, Marvel Bar is an excellent place for an after-work cocktail or to take a date, as the crowd is thinner and the bar takes on a more traditional speakeasy feel. On weekends, Marvel Bar can be pretty crowded, but that doesn’t make it any less fun, especially if that’s what you want. It’s a bit on the classy side, so make sure to dress accordingly. Look for the unmarked purple door and you’ve found the place.
Die-hard speakeasy fans will certainly appreciate the atmosphere at Al’s Place. You’ll feel like you’re in an F. Scott Fitzgerald novel as the bar immerses you into the roaring 20s. The bar is named after Al Capone, whose rise to fame as one of the most notorious gangsters took place during the 20s and 30s. Rumor has it that to get inside; you’ll have to utter the name of a piece of furniture to whoever is behind the doorknocker. So, keep that in mind just in case! Once inside, you’ll find some folks dressed up in 20s clothing, as well as live singers who bring the illusion of the prohibition era to life.
Have a drink on the 27th floor of the first skyscraper in Minneapolis at Prohibition. Located in the Foshay Tower, Prohibition was the place to be for years. Even with so many other speakeasies popping up, Prohibition has maintained its popularity because of the stunning views it provides. A must stop for people who are visiting the Twin Cities; every resident should also make time to go here at least once. It’s a staple of the Minneapolis community.
The Back Bar has an awesome Minnesota cabin feel to it. It’s a little smaller than your typical speakeasy, which creates a warm and intimate spot for drinks. The Back Bar is a favorite speakeasy for many Twin Cities natives. It’s connected to Young Joni, which is a great restaurant. Most people like to stop at the Back Bar before heading to Young Joni to get food. The best part: you can take your cocktail with you to Young Joni’s if you’re not finished with it yet.