What is it about speakeasies that just make you feel cool? The hidden entrances, the dim lighting and sleek interiors? Or maybe simply the fact you’re in the know. Even though we’re far from the booze-deprived days of prohibition, there are still some places that embrace secrecy when letting the hooch fly - and we’re here to spill the beans on the best hidden bars in beautiful San Diego.
Downtown San Diego has a lot going on. Tons of restaurants, bars, music venues, shops, and clubs. If you’re visiting for a work conference or taking a long weekend just because, there are plenty of places to have some serious fun and get into the right amount of trouble.
We’re dishing on the best hidden bars in San Diego’s Gaslamp, East Village and Little Italy neighborhoods, plus how to find them and if they take reservations. So, impress the boss and co-workers with your local intel, or treat that special someone to an exclusive experience - your secret is safe with us.
But before we dive in - a quick recap on all the amazing places you can stay in downtown San Diego:
- Stay Alfred on 6th Avenue
- Stay Alfred on 7th Avenue
- Stay Alfred on 10th Avenue
- Stay Alfred on G Street
Best part? All of these secret spots are within walking distance or a quick rideshare or to all of our San Diego travel apartments:
Noble Experiment - Home to some of the best mixologists in the city, belly up to the bar and get ready to have one of the best cocktails of your life.
How to enter: Located INSIDE Neighborhood, make your way toward the wall of kegs and push on the right hand side of the wall - those kegs are actually a secret door.
Takes reservations? Yes! Text in your reservation at 619.888.4713, but be warned they usually book up a week in advance.
Prohibition Liquor Bar - Those in the know love the vintage vibes and live music of this quite literally underground bar in the heart of the Gaslamp.
How to enter: When you’re on 5th Avenue look for the door that says “LAW OFFICE Eddie O’Hare Esq.” Ring the bell and someone will come and get you.
Takes reservations? Nope! And they have a dress code and strict no cellphone rule.
False Idol - This hidden tiki bar slings some strong drinks and offers a sensory-overload experience. Just don’t be scared when the thunder starts…
How to enter: Step inside Craft and Commerce and there will be a hostess to transport you through jungle vines and a tiki oasis.
Takes reservations? Indeed they do! Just head on over to OpenTable.
Vin de Syrah - Go down the rabbit hole and feel like you’re in Alice in Wonderland - but with wine. Make sure your phone is charged - you’ll be snapping selfies all over this place.
How to enter: Find The Melting Pot and you’ll see an underground cement staircase - take the staircase and you’ll see a hidden door covered in green grass - enter and voila!
Takes reservations? Kinda. If bottle service is your thing.
And just because we also love these places, we’re including two spots that aren’t hidden persay, but a bit off-the-beaten-path:
You & Yours Distillery - California’s only female-owned and operated distillery makes some killer gin and vodka and Insta-worthy craft cocktails. Take home a bottle to your travel apartment - You & Yours is actually located in the same building as Stay Alfred on G Street!