August 13, 2013 Slideshows » News, Blogs

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The Top 5 Dive Bars in Cleveland 

Since 1937, John's Café has been the dive bar up and down historic Erie Street in downtown Willoughby. In fact, it is such a well-known dive bar that it is now a cool spot for a new generation of young drinkers to hang. Opening at 7 p.m. and with DJs Thursday-Saturday, John's serves food, with an emphasis on pizza. But don't let the thumping music fool you. The neon "Liquor" sign out side says it all. Get your liver ready. John's Café is located at 4054 Erie St, Willoughby. Call (440) 942-0078 or visit johnscafedtw.com for more information.
Moriarty's Pub is located in the center of the post-prohibition era Short Vincent, our East 4th of the day. But like your favorite pair of jeans, this place was rode hard. It reeks of shifty lawyers and Powers whiskey, but the upswing is that the place is filled with character. And one of the only bars downtown that is booze only — no food here. Plus, the juke box is pretty killer. Moriarty's Pub is located at 1912 E 6th St, Downtown Cleveland. Call (216) 771-0211 for more information.
Photo Courtesy of FourSquare User Mark K.
West Park in considered one of the hardest drinking neighborhoods within a six-state radius and home to the mother of all dive bars — V.I.P. INN. For generations, this old school watering hole has been the site where broken dreams meet a cold Budweiser. But one thing is for sure, the beers are cold and the wings are pretty darn good. V.I.P. INN is located at 4107 Rocky River, Kamms Corner. Call (216) 476-2411 for more information.
Photo Courtesy of Yelp User Chas M.
One of the last strongholds of Tremont in the '80s is the Clark Bar. Walking in, you are greeted with as much suspicion and hesitation as a door-to-door salesman. But once you take your first shot of Kamchatka vodka, you will be welcomed as an honorary Clarke Bar-er. Another secret of this place is that their lunches are pretty damn tasty. But don't expect any food at night. This isn't amateur hour! The Clark Bar is located at 1201 Clark Ave, Tremont. Call (216) 344-9999 for more information.
Located on the busy Mayfield Road in South Euclid, the House of Swing is a kick-ass dive. The place has not had a dime put back into it in decades and has one of the largest vinyl collections of Blues music in the country. The live blues and jam sessions work perfectly with the distressed woods and 1970s pleather bar stools. Unless you like bar nuts no food here - just whiskey and some down and dirty blues. House of Swing is located at 4490 Mayfield Rd, South Euclid. Call (216) 382-2771 for more information.
2/5
Moriarty's Pub is located in the center of the post-prohibition era Short Vincent, our East 4th of the day. But like your favorite pair of jeans, this place was rode hard. It reeks of shifty lawyers and Powers whiskey, but the upswing is that the place is filled with character. And one of the only bars downtown that is booze only — no food here. Plus, the juke box is pretty killer. Moriarty's Pub is located at 1912 E 6th St, Downtown Cleveland. Call (216) 771-0211 for more information.
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