Veteran Austin bartender Scranton Twohey opened Whisler's in the summer of 2013, and the bar soon became a veritable destination for both locals and visitors alike. What's not to love? The cocktail program is ever-changing and wildly unique, thanks to the creativity of its bartenders like all-star Brett Esler; the spacious patio has become the ultimate spot for post-work drinks and all-day weekend hangs; and the attached upstairs bar, Mezcalería Tobalá, is a wonderland of mezcal. If you haven't been back since their new spring menu launched, try the Beware of Sleestak made with whiskey, celery, lemon, rice wine vinegar, fenugreek and wasabi sesame seed.
Judge's take: “Whisler's has impressed me since day one, and every time I come back (often) I'm reminded of how perfect this bar is: the drinks, the atmosphere, everything. And it just keeps getting better.”
Photograph: Courtesy Whisler's/Brian Flannery