Top Ten Dive Bars in Broward County
Ah, the dive bar. Some might think the term is an insult, but we mean it as a compliment - an endearment, really. Basically, it refers to any establishment where the cigarette smoke obscures your view of the aging barkeep, fights break out at 2 a.m., the jukebox plays only country or old rock classics, and red-faced patrons stumble in and out according to the after-hours sign on the door. And everyone's favorite slogan is "It's 5 o'clock somewhere." It's that grungy, comfy home away from home where everybody knows your name.
All these things -- and more -- are what makes for an unforgettable and (best of all) inexpensive night out. And this list is a lineup of all those places that help give Fort Liquordale its alter-ego name. Cheers to our list of the top ten dives in Broward County.
10. Grady's Bar
One of the oldest locals spots around, this is a no-frills kind of place with just one pool table, a pinball machine, and an old jukebox that still plays CDs. Standing at Andrews Avenue and Ninth Street, it's the type of spot known for attracting a good neighborhood crowd. And because the place has been around so long -- since 1940 -- the bar has become a favorite for quite a few generations of South Floridians who can appreciate the bar's old Fort Lauderdale "charm." Speaking of charm, we especially like that the bathrooms are located in the center of the bar, just in case too much cheap beer too fast does you in early. Here, a burger and fries will run you about $3.50, a draft beer less than $2. Sitting next to a toothless old man on a rickety wooden barstool? Priceless.
9. Dirty Blondes Sports Bar
After a bit of a face-lift and the addition of a few new flat-screen TVs, Blondies is back as Dirty Blondes, the new face of the old favorite dive bar on Fort Lauderdale beach advertising "The World's Longest Happy Hour" from noon to 10 p.m. daily. Dirty Blondes might also have the world's longest bar. It spans the entire reach of the place, 30 chairs long, and stops just short of a backroom that offers pool (it's free to play on Friday), darts, and a pinball machine. The best seat in the house is up front, where the entrance opens to offer a fresh-air view of the Atlantic Ocean and the Fort Lauderdale boardwalk off A1A. Dubbed a sports bar, it's a favorite among locals thanks to 50 flat-screen TVs, a basic selection of $3.75 well drinks, and 99-cent domestic draft beers. There's no food, but the crowd and bartenders -- and the deals -- make up for it.
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905 S. Andrews Ave., Fort Lauderdale, FL