San Diego Speakeasies
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There’s something to be said about the air of mystery & excitement behind visiting a speakeasy. And San Diego has its handful of hidden gem speakeasy’s to enjoy. While a traditional 1920’s speakeasy was for providing a space to consume alcohol when it was outlawed, our SD local joints are all about atmosphere, experience & most importantly specialty cocktails.
*Some of these San Diego Speakeasy’s would prefer to keep their location a mystery – part of the fun is finding them yourselves! – so, this list has the speakeasy’s listed but not their exact location. But ask around while you’re here & someone will happily oblige you.
*Almost every one of these speakeasy’s requires a reservation & even if it’s not required, I suggest making one to guarantee you’ll have a seat when you want to visit.
San Diego’s Speakeasies & Secret Bars
RAISED BY WOLVES
One of our newer speakeasy’s, Raised by Wolves is a gorgeous & traditionally designed spot located in one of the San Diego malls. Find the fireplace mantle as the hidden door to enter here.
REALM OF 52 REMEDIES
Realm of 52 Remedies is located in the Kearny Mesa/Convoy Street area of San Diego (I cannot wait to dive more into this area of San Diego & write about it here!). Hidden within a restaurant, this place is adding some serious cocktail envy to an already excellent dining neighborhood. Visitors with reservations will enjoy a mix of Chinese & Koren heritage within the interior design, and possibly their own ‘Emperor’s Bar’ experience.
Known for its hidden door at the back of a downtown restaurant, Noble Experiment is a true homage to traditional speakeasies. Order the dealers choice & tell your server what your favorite cocktail ingredients are for a one of a kind drink just for you.
You can find Prohibition by entering through an unambiguous lawyer office door somewhere in the Gaslamp district of downtown San Diego. While there are many reasons to enjoy Prohibition, it’s unique for enforcing a 1920’s dress code on the weekends. Step back in time & enjoy it for yourself.
Room 56 is a speakeasy in San Diego that is known to be ‘hush-hush’. It’s hidden within a downtown hotel & accessed through the library (how very Game of Clue of them). After descending down, guests are received in a 24-seat cocktail sanctum. A reservation to Room 56 will give you an intriguingly sophisticated experience.
Oculto 477 loves to maintain its hidden entrance, but I will give you the hint of its location being in Old Town & near a cemetery. It’s known for its candlelit interior that marks the resting places of each tombstone in the graveyard. With a cozy seating space & limited time (2 hours max allowed inside), guests will truly enjoy Oculto 477’s accurate, albeit spooky, prohibition-era atmosphere.
THE GRASS SKIRT
The Grass Skirt is fronted with a daytime poke restaurant in Pacific Beach. But inside maintains a traditional tiki atmosphere, with equally tropical drinks. Find the poke, find the tiki!
VIN DE SYRAH
So, technically, Vin de Syrah isn’t a speakeasy, however it is found through a hidden door beneath a popular chain restaurant downtown. I’ve included Vin de Syrah on this list because of its unique Alice in Wonderland ‘come to life’ interior & vibe. Come for drinks & appetizers in the afternoon and stay through the evening for its late night club (which feels more like a fun lounge).
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BAR THREE PIECE
Located within a well known North Park establishment, Bar Three Piece was inspired by Japan’s whiskey bars. Meaning, you’ll be able to sample some of THE best whiskeys you can find in San Diego. And if you’re a whiskey fan AND an SD local, you should take advantage of their locker program that allows you to purchase a bottle & keep it at the bar for your following visit.
Imagine a hidden Polynesian tiki bar & tropical cocktails all at your fingertips. False Idol, in Little Italy, doesn’t require reservations, but I recommend one so you don’t have to worry about enjoying your tiki drink. In order to find this speakeasy just know that when you’re getting warmer, you’re actually getting colder (If you’re a fan of The Office, I dare you to tell me which episode this is from)
I love how San Diego is such a foodie & cocktail city, so I hope you can enjoy its unique speakeasy’s.
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