Get us in your inbox

bang bang bar san antonio
Photo courtesy The Bang Bang Bar

The 11 best bars in San Antonio right now

For great happy hours, cocktails, bar bites and views that go on and on, get merry at the best bars in San Antonio

James Wong
Written by
James Wong
Matt Charnock

We’ll tell you one thing about San Antonio: it gets very, very hot. So after a long day of exploring everything the city has to offer, you’re going to need a drink (and it’s going to need to be very, very cold). 

Luckily for you, the city has bars a-plenty, from craft beer joints to classic dive bars (and much more). Here you’ll find seriously good happy hours, date night spots, and even a cocktail bar inside an art gallery. Here are the best bars in San Antonio right now. 

📍 The best things to do in San Antonio
🌮 The best restaurants in San Antonio
🏛️ The best museums in San Antonio
🏨 The best hotels in San Antonio

This guide was updated by Texas-based writer James Wong. At Time Out, all of our travel guides are written by local writers who know their cities inside out. For more about how we curate, see our editorial guidelines. 

Cool bars in San Antonio

With innovative cocktails, craft beers, and live bluegrass music, what’s not to like? Hidden in the cellar of the historic Pearl Brewery, Jazz doubles as a sprawling live-music venue. The 10-drink-long cocktail menu features springy names like Joie De Vivre (Gin, Pear Juice, Lemon, Simply Syrup, Cava)—try the Grasshopper if you fancy something sweet (precisely Creme de Cacao, Creme de Menthe, Cream, Mint). Dinner and lunch menus feature South Texas and Tex-Mex favorites like brisket tacos and pecan pie. 

With more than 80 years of serving behind it, Bar America is one of the oldest bars in San Antonio. Classic offerings like Negronis, Old Fashioneds, and Bloody Marys share a menu with more inventive concoctions like cucumber martinis. But Bar America is foremost a beer-centric pub, complete with Mexican lagers, IPAs, pale ales, and more. Swing by the happy hour for deals on beers, cocktails, wines, and finger foods like fried pickles with a side of homemade ranch dressing.


Having survived both the Great Depression and Prohibition, the Esquire Tavern knows a thing or two about keeping their patrons happy. One of the bar’s hallmarks is its famous 100-foot mahogany bar—the longest bar top in the state. Live jazz and burlesque nights are popular here. Drinks like the Baby One More Thyme (Gin, Raspberry, Thyme, Aloe, Lemon, Topo Chico, served on crushed ice) and Bexar Hug (Blanco Tequila, Guava, Lime, Sparkling Wine, shaken and served up) are among the more interesting creations from their 20-plus cocktail menu.

With sweeping views of downtown San Antonio and its eponymous river, Paramour is the perfect perch to sit back, drink in hand, and take in all of south-central Texas. Luckily, the drinks are as good as the view at San Antonio's very first rooftop bar. We like the Three Dots and Dash (dark rum, Agricole, orange, lime, allspice, and falernum) and the Greenpoint (rye, green chartreuse, sweet vermouth, bitters). Not in the mood for a cocktail? Paramour also stocks over a dozen craft beers (many locally sourced) and a wide array of domestic and imported wines. The surprisingly long list of mocktails means even the DD can partake in a night out on the town. 


The Bang Bang isn’t your typical dive bar. Developed by former Martini Ranch owner Jamie Hoppe and two members of local indie band, Girl in a Coma, the Bang Bang is bright, fresh, and whimsical—craft cocktails are garnished with cotton candy and Pop Rocks. Entertainment comes in the form of pool tables, dart boards, pinball machines, and local acts playing live music. 

Yes, this is technically an art gallery, but it's also one of the coolest date nights in town. The 20,000 square foot lounge features a patio (with food truck), a full bar serving cocktails, beer, and wine…and best of all, you can actually take your drinks into the exhibits with you. Step into another world of immersive experience featuring talented international artists whose work comes together for a sensory overload of strobe lights, mirrored rooms, and interactive stations. Trust us, being buzzed never felt more exciting. Tickets must be booked in advance.



You won't find the same old cocktails that overflow from other River Walk bars at The Liberty Bar. They keep their seasonal and regular cocktail menu small, putting quality and creativity above quantity. Program cornerstones like the Amaro Lucano, Averna, and Character Amontillado Sherry are popular, and Monday's happy hour features half-off bottles of wine. Plus, Liberty Bar makes its own pasta in-house—order the fettucini; it is spectacular.


One of San Antonio’s best-kept secrets, George’s Keep is a trendy cocktail den with a comfortable neighborhood feel, located on the edge of the glamorous Eilan Hotel & Spa. Once you pass through the Tolkien-esque door (the hallway is fit for a hobbit), you’ll find yourself in a sophisticated 1960s-inspired lounge. Farm-to-table, seasonal cuisine is paired with a tongue-in-cheek cocktail program. Try George's Signature Margarita (El Tesoro Extra Añejo and apricot liqueur).

Kill Bill fans will instantly know this bar means business. A thriving Japanese gastropub, Hanzo offers a well-rounded sake list and a perfectly executed cocktail list only seven drinks long. We like the Jiggly Puff (vodka, yuzu wine, lime, and sparkling sake) and the Shinobu Bramble (gin, white, peach sake, blackberry liqueur, butterfly pea tea, and lemon). Hanzo's late-night happy hour from 11pm until close means you can keep the drinks coming until last call.


A relaxing gastropub with a south-Texas twist, TBA is great for affordable drinks, live music, late-night eats, and petting cute dogs on the patio. Cocktails rarely cost more than $11, and the wine is reasonable too. Happy hour is Monday through Friday (4–7pm), when house cocktails are just $5, all beers are $1 off, and wine and other treats are available.

    You may also like
    You may also like