Best of Columbia SC 2018



Racks Restaurant & Sports Bar

Rack up the fun at Racks. How could you not have fun with 25 televisions, six pool tables, six dart boards and horseshoes? It offers the SEC network and NFL direct ticket. Factor in a jukebox, plenty of outside seating, a full menu (see food section) and a separate room for private parties. Party on. 569.6512; racksnortheast.business.site


Art Bar

The longtime bastion of alt-night-life, Art Bar has embraced creatives forever. You never know what you will find on the entertainment line-up but it will assuredly be comprised of Columbia’s finest indie bands. Eclectic décor plasters the walls, while comfy sofas beckon. The experience is dreamlike, as if Andy Warhol and Lou Reed have reemerged to take you clubbing. 929.0198; artbarsc.com

Craft Brewery

River Rat Brewery

River Rat brews bold, balanced beers to quench the heartiest thirst and you can get one from more than 85 Columbia venues.  When you’re heading out to the brewery’s porch, remember to bring along your leashed-dog. Woof! Step inside and order an ale, porter or something off the tavern menu. Tour of the brewery by appointment. 724.5712; riverratbrewery.com

Happy Hour

The Whig

What is near the Statehouse, offers the best happy hour since 2005, is easier to step into than climb out of, and was once named greatest dive bar in America? Why you bunch of Tories, it’s the Whig! The food rivals restaurant fare and the walls adorned with taxidermy and what-nots rival any museum. No need to worry about the climb back up from this hip subterranean dive. Another round, bartender! 931.8852;  thewhig.org


Hunter-Gatherer Brewery & Alehouse

A public house or tavern originally meant "any building open to the public that provides food and is licensed to sell ale, wine and spirits." What makes a pub in S.C. is ethereal more than legal, since bars meet those same criteria. Hunter-Gatherer exudes a pub atmosphere, with its barn-wood balcony, roughhewn tables and rustic brick walls reminiscent of mid-millennial England. Leave your swords at home, but quench a hand-brewed ale, then order another, ye olde pubster! 748.0540;  huntergathererbrewery.com