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Best of Memphis 2010: Nightlife



Best Place To See Live Music

1. Minglewood Hall

2. Hi-Tone Cafe

3. Levitt Shell

Despite its short history, Minglewood snagged this award for the second year in a row. Shows from the likes of Amos Lee, the Dead Weather, and Hanson have kept opinions high. And with the newly added Revive oxygen/cereal/coffee bar and the opening of Oasis Hookah Lounge's second location inside, the Minglewood experience is becoming more multifaceted all the time.

Best Local Band

1. North Mississippi Allstars

2. Ingram Hill

3. Lucero

Hailing from, well, north Mississippi, these Allstars maintain roots in the Bluff City despite their worldwide fame. Whether it's a stint at the Beale Street Music Festival or a cameo appearance at a local college, they're ready to give — and receive — some welcome hometown flavor.

Best Local Singer

1. Amy LaVere

2. Yo Gotti

3. Joyce Cobb

Embracing a plethora of musical styles effortlessly, Amy LaVere has earned her place as a distinctive member of the Memphis scene. Her career has led to more extensive travel, but Flyer readers have kept tabs on LaVere, and she's always happy to reward them with an elegant show at home.

Best Karaoke

1. Windjammer Restaurant & Lounge

2. Yosemite Sam's

3. Blue Monkey

The Windjammer knows dedication: Their six-night-a-week karaoke schedule allows for the kind of longevity other bars would gladly cut off at the first signs of overindulgence. And Flyer readers are happy to take advantage of the opportunity.

Best Hole-in-the-Wall

1. Earnestine & Hazel's

2. P&H Cafe

3. Alex's

An evening walking around the galleries on South Main is best followed up by a night enjoying the cozy, slightly shabby atmosphere of one of Memphis' favorite bars. You may first try it for the burgers, the beer, or the pool tables, but the storied staff and customers — not to mention the bar's haunted history — will keep you coming back.

Best College Hangout

1. Newby's

2. RP Tracks

3. Flying Saucer

Conveniently located just off the University of Memphis campus, Newby's is home to beer, pool, the games on TV, and live music. True to the college tradition, patrons of this versatile bar are going steady, seven days a week.

Best Bartender

1. Gabe DeRanzo, Young Avenue Deli

2. Brad Pitts, Bari Ristorante

3. Jamie West, Silly Goose

With 13 years as a Young Avenue bartender under his belt, Gabe DeRanzo is a true pro. You may have exchanged a few words with this fun-loving, friendly guy on the weekend, when he wanders the main floor of the Deli, but his company is arguably best enjoyed with a quiet drink at the bar earlier in the week.

Best After-Hours Club

1. Paula Raiford's Disco

2. Earnestine & Hazel's

3. Alex's

The latest from the legendary Raiford family is hopping. Limousine pickup is available for your journey to this lavishly decorated club for drinks, dancing, and Raiford's classic soul performances.

Best Pickup Joint

1. Peabody Rooftop

2. Flying Saucer

3. Blue Monkey

In the last two years, the Peabody Rooftop Party has gone through a renaissance while maintaining its crown as the best pickup joint in Memphis. It's under the stars, the weather hot enough to require adult beverages and the smallest of cocktail dresses, a gentle breeze rolling off the river ... hey, what's your name?

Best Cougar Bar

1. Spindini

2. T.J. Mulligan's

3. Blue Monkey

For young men looking for a more mature woman, Spindini is the place to find them — but you better be ready to drop some serious cash. It takes more than a beer to impress the ladies here, boys.

Best Beer Selection

BOM 1. Flying Saucer

2. Boscos Squared

3. Young Avenue Deli

The Saucer has so many beers, it's not even funny. Besides the challenging goal of seeing your name on one of their trophy plates, the bar's perfect downtown location and open windows make it an ideal spot for tipping back a pint.

Best Place To Get a Martini

1. Peabody Lobby Bar

2. Beauty Shop

3. Silly Goose

The best martinis — shaken, not stirred; an olive, no twist — should be accompanied by a well-cut suit, a stunning woman, and a sophisticated atmosphere. (Trust us: You're not going to swill one at a kegger or on the beach.) The Peabody Lobby Bar is a quiet combination of world travelers, the old South, and — if you're lucky enough to sink into one — the most comfortable couches and armchairs this side of the Mississippi.

Best Place To Get a Margarita

1. Happy Mexican

2. Molly's La Casita

3. Cafe Ole

Why do they call this place the Happy Mexican? We don't really know. But we're certain a true native of Mexico would not be happy with a sub-par margarita. This downtown cantina serves an ice-cold cocktail (frozen or on the rocks) that makes everybody beam with delight.

Best Happy Hour

1. Flying Saucer

2. Bardog

3. Boscos Squared

Not only does the Flying Saucer offer the largest selection of beer in town, but you can get big-ass 22-ounce glasses of most of those tasty brews for the price of a pint every Tuesday through Friday from 4 to 7 p.m.

Best Place To Dance

1. Paula Raiford's Disco

2. Club 152 Beale

3. Rumba Room

Wherever Raiford goes, so goes the party. When the legendary, Jheri-curl-sporting, cape-wearing DJ and his daughter Paula moved into new digs on Second Street, loyal disco fans followed. Put on your boogie shoes, get your drank on, and dance the night away to disco and soul classics.

Best Jukebox

1. Earnestine & Hazel's

2. Alex's

3. Young Avenue Deli

You won't find one of them newfangled Internet jukeboxes at this downtown brothel turned dive bar. The old-school jukebox at Earnestine & Hazel's boasts a great selection of classic Motown, soul, blues, and jazz tunes, including many from influential local artists. There's no bad music on this jukebox, so you don't have to worry about listening to $5 worth of crappy songs.

Best Place To Shoot Pool

1. Fox & Hound English Tavern

2. Young Avenue Deli

3. P&H Cafe

Folks don't shoot pool at the Fox & Hound. They play billiards. Both the East Memphis and Cordova locations offer multiple tables for serious billiard players. Meet your pool buddies on a Tuesday and take advantage of the Fox & Hound's $2.50 pint night.

Best Sports Bar

1. Fox & Hound English Tavern

2. Buffalo Wild Wings

3. T.J. Mulligan's

A measly little TV above the bar tuned to ESPN does not a sports bar make, and the Fox & Hound is serious about sports. Think UFC nights, Fantasy Football draft parties, and satellite and cable coverage of multiple sporting events.

Best Gay Bar

1. Backstreet

2. The Pumping Station

3. Senses

Despite a few legal trials and tribulations over the past year, Backstreet has bounced back with a vengeance. That's because people of all sexual orientations can't get enough of Backstreet's fabulously campy drag shows, Friday night beer busts, hot dance mixes, and the largest high-energy dance floor in Midtown.

Best New Bar

1. South of Beale

2. Local Gastropub

3. Rehab Disco

You may arrive at the bar intent on "drinking your dinner," but the beer munchies can't be satisfied by more beer. Thankfully, S.O.B. offers more than your usual pub grub. Among their gourmet bar-food options are beer-braised brisket egg rolls, wild boar sausage with peppers on a pretzel bun, and an S.O.B. burger made with Guinness porter.

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