By Connie Ogle
Not that there’s anything wrong with the same old drinks.
But the holidays are here, and there’s a brand new year on the horizon. How about changing things up by trying some of the new bars and lounges that opened in 2018? You’ll find something that fits your style, whether you’re in favor of high-end, old-school cocktails or sucking down every craft beer you can get your hands (and mouth) on.
This hidden cocktail lounge – above Taquerias el Mexicano in Little Havana – was dreamed up by the team behind Ball & Chain and will take your Instagram account to new heights with its insanely colorful Mexican decor. You will not be surprised to know many of its specialty cocktails involve tequila or mezcal. And the secret-ish location also allows you to show off to friends, family and other out-of-town guests. Who doesn’t want to act like a big shot?
521 SW Eighth St., Little Havana
You don’t have to be a guest at the Ritz-Carlton Coconut Grove to explore The Commodore’s old-fashioned charms. You can sample the extensive and creative cocktail list (like the Spicy Raspberry Collins, made from Zyr vodka, lemon juice, jalapeno syrup and St. Germaine) at the luxurious indoor bar or outside on a covered patio, depending on the weather. Bonus: a jazz trio plays from 9 p.m. to midnight on Fridays and Saturdays.
The Ritz-Carlton, Coconut Grove, 3300 SW 27th Ave., Coconut Grove
At this welcome addition to Downtown Dadeland, which took over the former World of Beer space, craft beer is king. Join the Brew Crew club and work your way through 300 beers on tap, earn points and special offers.
9010 SW 72nd Place, Miami
Back in the day, it was called Bardot. Now, this space in Midtown Miami is Boombox, from the creators of Mason Eatery and Beaker & Gray. With distressed walls, antique lighting and lots of velvet and leather. Boombox also has a dance floor and VIP bottle service (although you are not required to participate in either). Try drinks like Lemon Drop the Mic and/or The Longest Island Ice Tea.
3456 North Miami Ave., Miami
You can eat and drink at this spot on the second floor at CityPlace Doral. It’s half an upscale pub and half a performance space, with live music Wednesday – Saturday. You can also sit outside on the terrace or just grab a spot at the bar, where you can find all the craft beer you can drink or craft cocktails, if you are so inclined. And of course you are.
450 NW 83rd Ave., #224, Doral
Brickell’s favorite Latin nightclub heads down to Kendall, bringing live entertainment, fire shows, nightly drink specials and a late night party atmosphere to The Palms at Town and Country. There’s karaoke on Wednesdays and an all-you-can-eat brunch for $50 on Sundays.
8405 Mills Drive, Kendall
Enjoy a cozy lounge vibe at this bar at the recently redesigned Kimpton Angler’s Hotel South Beach. The cocktails involve a lot of muddling – with herbs, fruit, tea – and we are definitely pro-muddling. But you can also sip wine by the glass or beer and nobody will judge you.
660 Washington Ave., Miami Beach
Looking for a place to watch a game, eat and drink? Pub 52 has you covered with more than 30 TVs and a menu that includes all the favorite sports bar fare: burgers, wings, flatbreads, a raw bar. There’s also a pool table, live music and open mic nights.
5829 SW 73rd St., South Miami