The Ten Best Dive Bars in St. Louis

Categories: Best Of

The-Silverleaf-Lounge.jpg
Jaime Lees
The Silverleaf Lounge
Selecting Riverfront Times' Best of St. Louis 2012 wasn't easy. Choosing the winner meant several worthy candidates would go unmentioned -- until now. In this RFT Music series, we're beeboping and scattin' our way through notable runners up in a number of categories. This week: The best dive bars in St. Louis.


The Silverleaf Lounge
(3442 Hereford Street; 314-481-4080)
The bartenders here claim that the Silverleaf is the smallest bar in the city of St. Louis, and that's a believable claim. The entire room holds just a few small tables and a row of stools along the bar, and what also must be the smallest bathrooms in the city of St. Louis. But the patrons are chatty and welcoming to non-regulars, and the tiny jukebox is stuffed with new country and old blues. Don't expect many frills here, but the tiny draft-beer selection and limited cocktail options are more than made up for with the friendly spirit of the bar and the Etta James on the jukebox.

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Red's Eighth Inning
Red's Eighth Inning Bar
(6412 Michigan Avenue; 314-353-1084)
This rowdy little establishment is situated right in the middle of a neighborhood, near the corner of Michigan and Holly Hills avenues. The huge jukebox is constantly blaring, and the people there are always looking to see or be seen. It's a great people-watching bar, not least of all because the modern rock music is usually playing so loud that neighboring tables can't hear you shit-talking with your friends. The bartenders don't take any crap and won't hesitate to kick you out if they don't like you, or hug you and offer you a free drink if you manage to get on their good side. Old school.

highlights-bar-and-grill-st-louis.jpg
Google Maps
Highlights Bar and Grill
(7301 South Broadway; 314-351-2422)
There's a little smattering of dive bars on South Broadway (just down the river from Bellerive Park) that welcome newcomers and make exploring new establishments easy with their fabulous prices. The corner space occupied by Highlights was formerly called Kathleen's Steak House. The drinks are cheap here, but know what you want because there isn't a drinks menu to be found. It's the kind of bar where people are friendly, but they won't really bother you. And though the bar stools may all be full, it's still easy to get the attention of the bartender. This place does offer something extra that is lacking in many dive bars: food. The pizza selection is limited, but hey -- dive-bar pizza!


Location Info

Map

The Silverleaf Lounge

3442 Hereford St., St. Louis, MO

Category: Music

Red's Eighth Inning Bar

6412 Michigan Ave., St. Louis, MO

Category: Music

Rosie's Place

4573 Laclede Ave., St. Louis, MO

Category: Music

Area IV

5918 Hampton Ave., St. Louis, MO

Category: Music

Cat's Meow

2600 S 11th St, St. Louis, MO

Category: Music

Area IV

5918 Hampton Ave., St. Louis, MO

Category: Music

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125 comments
Angela Weakley Hill
Angela Weakley Hill

RIP to the best dive St. Louis ever had, Frederick's Music Lounge. Loved that place and the people so much that I traveled 800 miles to be there on the last night it was open.

Daniel Myers
Daniel Myers

Putting this on my to do list. I miss STL

Sheryl Peltz
Sheryl Peltz

My son Jim and my almost-daughter-in-law Maria Rask will appreciate this.

Lace King
Lace King

This picture makes me miss O'Malley's on Cherokee. :( They were my favorite.

Jay Hemp
Jay Hemp

Cat's Meow is my favorite dive. Where else can you get hot TJ's pizzas?!?! Love it!!!

Scott Gibson
Scott Gibson

Yay another game of 'lets click through ten pages for ten pictures so that RT can scam the SEO'.

Susan Rader Parsons
Susan Rader Parsons

I see a challenge coming on. Next time I'm in town we are trying one or two of these out.

Bette Latta
Bette Latta

How many have you been to Myles Essick

Jason Blake
Jason Blake

Hey we have a Silverleaf in Springfield (MO). I guess all Silverleaves are dives.

stlclassylady
stlclassylady

I thought JP Corner would be on the Dive List!

George Culp
George Culp

Again!! Nothing like a school bus out in front of a bar.

Jan Smith
Jan Smith

has any one ever heard of a bar called the longhorn? My Father use to go there...

Stephanie Guth
Stephanie Guth

Lisa Bosslet, I'd like to try some if these. I've only been to one.

John Haller
John Haller

The Silverleaf Lounge has been there a long time. My grandfather was a regular patron and I think his friendly spirit may still be there on one of the stools.

Josh Revelle
Josh Revelle

I agree the Silverleaf is the best dive bar in st louis. But for fuck sake RFT, how many times do you have to recycle a story!? If you could actually come up with imaginative stories anymore, you wouldnt be doing this.

Tim Danneman
Tim Danneman

Maybe time for an updated article that wasn't written on April 26, 2013?........

Grady Lynch
Grady Lynch

"Daytime drunks will stumble into your table and it gets a little raucous at night, but it's all in good fun"... I might have to take your word for it! :P

Drewarosa Rental
Drewarosa Rental

Never the boss !!! Remember that one Jenn grandpa s favorite saying lol.

David Palatnik
David Palatnik

Adam Spielberg Leah Greenbaum let's check them all

Bryan Jeffryes
Bryan Jeffryes

This article is a year old. To lazy to find a list for 2014?

Dawn Waters
Dawn Waters

R U Kidding! Why not you know me and Joe will drink anywhere!

Kalie Long
Kalie Long

pshhh... CBGBS in by far the top dive bar in STL.

Sherie Oberkramer
Sherie Oberkramer

Dee Martin, not any more, but im sure we have been to every dive bar here in St. louis at some point in time. :)

Dee Martin
Dee Martin

Sherie Oberkramer hahaha u and Scott frequent any of these!!!??!!

Heidi Joplin-Donovan
Heidi Joplin-Donovan

Blake Hodge James Donovan Rachel Umbright Conan Berry Dawn Waters Lisa Johnston.....we should all go tries these out!

Deb Woods
Deb Woods

Kickers Corner is da bomb. They seriously don't get any better than Kickers. Great food, great people and ungodly inexpensive!

Dodie Pollard Dickey
Dodie Pollard Dickey

Check this out, Katina Strange & Erika Dickey... Cat's Meow made the list!

Paul Byrne
Paul Byrne

Some good spots but where's the 1-Nite Stand, Iowa Buffet or Benny's? Some of the places listed don't even sell pints of liquor to go. Wtf?

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