The 10 Best Bars in Adelaide

Best Bars Adelaide

Find the Best Bars in Adelaide – from Wine Bars & Cocktail Bars to favourite local pubs. Adelaide has a lot to offer and now with the approval for Small Bars going ahead, we will be seeing a lot of small and trendy venues opening.

The new licences will be cheaper and more streamlined than current options, in a bid to encourage young entrepreneurs to open small venues and enliven the city’s laneways.

1. Cushdy (Cocktail Bar)

Get in quick! Cushdy is closing it’s doors tomorrow! Cushdy recently won Cocktail Bar of the Year (SA) at the Australian Bar Awards and have been nominated for several other awards within the industry. Sean’s future plans are to open a new venue – still within the Adelaide CBD.

Cushdy Cocktail Bar

2. Clever Little Tailor (Wine Bar)

The Clever Little Tailor has a great beer and wine selection. It’s not overly spacious but it makes for a cosy and intimate bar. Friendly and attentive staff to make your after work drinks more enjoyable. (Clever Little Tailor)

Clever Little Tailor on Urbanspoon

Clever Little Tailor

3. Udaberri (Wine Bar)

Another winner at the Australian Bar Awards – winning Bar of the Year (SA)! This bar brings me back to my Euro travels. Serving up Pintxos, the Basque region’s version of tapas – simply amazing food! Ever tried pintxos before? (Udaberri)

Udaberri Pintxos Y Vino on Urbanspoon

Udaberri Pintxos Bar

4. The Warradale (Front Bar/Pub)

The Warradale boasts a spacious bistro and an inviting garden/verandah bar. These guys are serving up some great pub food and pretty much round the clock specials so check them out if you haven’t already. (The Warradale)

The Warradale on Urbanspoon

Warradale Front Bar

5. Press Food & Wine (Wine Bar)

Press have an amazing looking menu and I’ve worked through a number of the items – make sure you try the burger!! (Press Food & Wine)

Press Food and Wine on Urbanspoon

Press Food & Wine Bar

6. Fumo Blu (Cocktail Bar)

Fumo is one of my all time favourites. A late night venue that has been serving up fantastic cocktails for years. You can’t go wrong with any of their cocktails – the staff have great product knowledge to impress too. (Fumo Blu)

Fumo Blu Cocktail Bar

7. The Highway (Front Bar/Pub)

The Highway has won a stream of AHA awards and rightfully so. Since the renovations back in ’06 (I’m guessing here!) they have drawn crowds of diners and party-goers. The hotel boasts a huge beer garden area (heated for those colder months!) with a monstrous screen to watch your favourite sport. (The HWY)

The Highway / HWY on Urbanspoon

Highway Lounge Bar

8. Casablabla (Cocktail Bar)

Casablabla has a very inviting feel to it, drawing inspiration from Morocco, Turkey, Bali and Cambodia. Sit back, relax with a cocktail and enjoy the salsa and flamenco dancers that regularly hit the d-floor. (Casablabla)

Casablabla on Urbanspoon

Casablabla Cocktail Bar

9. The Wheatsheaf Hotel (Front Bar/Pub)

The Wheaty pub is a hidden gem for all the craft beer aficionados out there. Regularly hosting craft beer launches, meet the brewer sessions and more. They have a pretty impressive range of beers available so you’ll find something that you love. (The Wheatsheaf Hotel)

Wheatsheaf Hotel on Urbanspoon

The Wheaty Pub

10. Cantina Sociale (Wine Bar)

I’m yet to visit but it has made the top 10 due to all the positive reviews I’ve been hearing lately – what do you like about Cantina Sociale? (Cantina Sociale)

Cantina Sociale on Urbanspoon

Cantina Sociale Wine Bar

What do you think is the best bar in Adelaide?

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  • Reply
    October 1, 2013 at 7:14 pm

    Kidding me right? Cushdy – really? so good it went broke. Fumo Blu – you must know the owners cause the place only attracts undesirables. Cantina Sociale – selling other makers wine and claiming he made them; ON A PRODUCERS LICENSE (Justin told me). Warradale and Highway – is Marty Palmer paying you? *edited

    • Reply
      Steve the Bartender
      October 2, 2013 at 7:44 am

      Thanks for the feedback Keith, even if it was negative.
      Cushdy must have been doing something right as they’ve won plenty of awards, one awarded only days before writing this post actually.
      I’ve only had good experiences at Fumo Blu – and that’s what this list is based on, my personal experiences.
      As mentioned in the post, I haven’t been to Cantina Sociale but I’ve heard good things and others seem to love the place!
      Haha, no I’m not getting paid to write the article – open to offers though! 😉

      Feel free to email me your list of top 10 bars and I might reconsider the list!

  • Reply
    Mark Mc
    October 2, 2013 at 1:20 am

    Agree with pretty much every choice.
    Three of my favourites not on your list are Rocket Bar, Botanic Bar and The Crown & Anchor.

    • Reply
      Steve the Bartender
      October 2, 2013 at 7:32 am

      Thanks for the feedback Mark! I like Botanic too, only been there once or twice though. Haven’t been to The Crown & Anchor since I was 17!! 🙂

  • Reply
    October 2, 2013 at 10:48 am

    In no order: The Exeter, Botanic Bar, The Lion, Colonist, Le Boheme, Wheaty, Proof/Press?
    “listed is based on own personal experiences” & “Cantina Sociale but I’ve heard good things and others seem to love the place!”
    hmmmm?? contradicting much?

    • Reply
      Steve the Bartender
      October 2, 2013 at 10:59 am

      I’ve personally experienced a lot of people saying good things about it 😉

  • Reply
    October 2, 2013 at 11:15 am


  • Reply
    October 8, 2013 at 11:17 pm

    Loft Oyster and wine Bar for a large venue that offers premium products unlike any other! The manager, Edward, is so lovely to all guests making them feel at home.

  • Reply
    March 25, 2014 at 3:21 pm

    The German club, every time. I love me some lederhosen.

  • Reply
    June 12, 2014 at 1:46 am

    Steve, what about The Apothecary? I have had a couple of good nights there. I am a little lost since Dragonfly closed down. Any ideas on a good bar with good food to share?

    • Reply
      Steve the Bartender
      June 12, 2014 at 8:46 am

      We’re writing an updated “Best Bars of 2014” article but this time round we are taking votes – I’ve just added The Apothecary to the list if you wanted to vote for it (in the sidebar).
      Never made it to Dragonfly myself but have heard good reviews. Also hearing a lot of things about Jack Ruby but haven’t had a chance to make it there – the food does look amazing, not so much sharing food though.
      Udaberri is a wicked place that serves up Pintxos (tapas) which is perfect for sharing. Have you been there?
      Try checking out On the Chopping Board, they have a lot of great reviews.

  • Reply
    June 13, 2014 at 3:04 am

    Thanks Steve. Planning on going to Udaberri next week (after reading your list).

    • Reply
      Steve the Bartender
      June 26, 2014 at 12:30 pm

      Did you make it in to Udaberri Mark? How was your experience?

  • Reply
    August 5, 2014 at 8:08 pm

    I personally like the Belgium Beer Café and PJ O’Brians Irish pub, but that is personal tastes.

    • Reply
      Steve the Bartender
      August 5, 2014 at 9:22 pm

      I love the Belgium Beer Cafe too and certainly had a few big nights out at PJ’s! We’ll be releasing our 2014 Best Bars article real soon after we get more poll results: vote here.

  • Reply
    October 13, 2014 at 9:59 pm

    These days I love going to Bank St Social Club and Pirie and Co Social Club. Pirie and Co has jazz nights on Wednesdays which is awesome!!

    • Reply
      Steve the Bartender
      October 14, 2014 at 4:20 pm

      They are both on my to do list Cordelia! 🙂 will have to try & hit them up for jazz night!

  • Reply
    Paul c
    December 18, 2014 at 10:09 pm

    Brew boys, Wellington, archer, upstairs ruby red flamingo, oriental before it was done up again, may lands, earl of Leicester, Bombay bicycle club, victor harbour hotel, pt Elliot hotel, steam exchange brewery, cradock hotel, rising sun pt Wakefield, marree hotel, arkaroola, many more..

    • Reply
      Steve the Bartender
      December 22, 2014 at 10:58 am

      Cheers for additions Paul! 🙂

  • Reply
    Bruce Taylor
    December 7, 2015 at 3:28 am

    Am guessing you haven’t been to La Buvette in Grisham place? French feel and atmosphere, great wines/cocktails & beers – do yourself a favour and check it out!



    • Reply
      Steve the Bartender
      December 7, 2015 at 10:41 am

      Think I wrote the article before La Buvette was open 🙂 due for a 2016 update! My list of bars to visit is long!! Are you a customer or do you work there? 🙂

  • Reply
    Henry James
    February 1, 2016 at 2:45 pm

    Steve, heading to Adelaide later this week… don’t suppose you know a classy bar over Walkerville/North Adelaide way? Meeting an ex and want to impress!

    • Reply
      Steve the Bartender
      February 5, 2016 at 9:38 am

      I’m racking my brain and every place I think of is more central CBD.

      I’d recommend Clever Little Tailor for a wine (Peel St), The Collins Bar for cocktails (Hilton, Victoria Square), Maybe Mae for a late night cocktail (Peel St), Udaberri for a late night glass of wine and tapas (Leigh St) or Haines & Co. for a great gin!

      Too many choices I know!

  • Reply
    July 1, 2016 at 9:23 pm

    Weekend only in Adelaide soon…. Coming from Nth QLD. Thoughts on cosy bars with live music and fire place ??

    • Reply
      Steve the Bartender
      July 5, 2016 at 8:13 am

      Hey Tracey! Let me know what kind of bars and music you prefer and I’ll see if I can come up with a few recommendations 🙂

  • Reply
    November 4, 2018 at 11:02 pm

    Love the article Steve, but I reckon it’s about time for an update. It’s 2018 and the world of laneway & basement hangouts has definitely evolved since this publish. What’aya say about a venue research bar-crawl? Strictly for editorial purposes of course. I’ll be the first to follow your tracks after you republish.

    • Reply
      Steve the Bartender
      November 5, 2018 at 2:17 pm

      Thanks Alice! Way, way, waaaaay overdue for an update hey! 5 years on and there are so many more amazing venues open… Given that it’s the end of the year, I’ll have to put together a 2019 list 😉

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