by Jonathan Baker - 319 Reviews - 185 List
Ah, a night out with the guys in Atlanta. You and your buddies are all modern, sophisticated individuals, connoisseurs of the fine food, art and culture. But, with no womenfolk around, the ravenous, overly competitive Neanderthal side comes out, eager to tear flesh, guzzle booze and satisfy inner urges. Here's a list of the best places for men to be men and enjoy a guys night out in Atlanta--leaving out only strip clubs--both for good taste and because you already know where those are.
Updated: August 19, 2011
Bones, Chops and Rathbun Steak get all the steak credit in Atlanta, but there is no more masculine restaurant (or bar) than the Highland Tap. Lodged underground in a stone cellar, this is a no-bull kind of place. Big slabs of prime rib served with martinis and sidecars cement it as dude-friendly. The cougars that stroll in late-night simply add to the possibilities.
There is no guy ritual like that of a live sporting event. And, while we love the Falcons, it's tough to get too fired up when they play in a temp-controlled dome. Sports were meant to be played outside, so enjoy summer evenings with a cold beer, hot dogs and the Braves at the Ted. With games as cheap as $6, it's a good option for frugal dudes.
Gents typically turn to the golf course to get away. It's a place to drink beer, suck down cigars, gamble with buddies ... and use trees as urinals. In-towners should look to Bobby Jones in Buckhead as their public option. With newly planted greens (similar to prestigious East Lake) and fees under 40 bones, it's Atlanta's best public deal.
For high-class Scotch and cigars, the Highland Cigar Co. is unmatched with a walk-in humidor, super-fancy ventilation system, giant leather chairs, 40 different Scotches and high-def flat screens to take in the game. It's also not uncommon for the bar to break out the card tables. Sleeping there, while tempting, is not permitted.
The grill, the smoke, the meat--whatever it is--barbecue operates like a tractor beam for guys nights out in Atlanta. And, it really doesn't matter if you've already eaten; you can eat again. Our call for `cue is Fox Bros. BBQ. Texas-style beef brisket, smoked wings and a slathered tater tot appetizer called the Tomminator will make you salivate for days.
Barbershops have always been bastions of male bonding, but this spot takes it to another level. Beverages of your choice, personal TVs and comfy barber chairs create a boys-club atmosphere. Get an old-school shave while watching a ballgame and drinking Scotch--she can't be mad if you come home looking better than when you left.
This bar was definitely conceived by a dude, with dudes in mind. It's located in the basement of the White Provisions building, the menu is stuffed with adult finger foods (corn dogs, cotton candy), and there are games to play downstairs. Because what's better than drinking craft beer? Drinking it during a game of bocce ball or while setting a new personal record in Skee-Ball.
Guys typically don't shop together, but this isn't your ordinary men's store. There's a fridge stocked with glass bottle Coke and Budweiser, vintage records spinning on the hi-fi and impromptu ping-pong matches. The staff is one part style adviser and one part new-found friend. The collection of goods ranges from dapper wingtips to classic aviators.
There is no more guy-centric sandwich than the burger, and finding a good burger in Atlanta has become easier than ever. While there are fancy burgers (Rathbun Steak) and funky burgers (Flip), our call for the everyman burger is Grindhouse. Burgers get delivered in old-school paper sleeves, the menu is super-simple, and the setting industrial.
With the influx in masculine, mixologist-driven cocktails these days (thank you, Don Draper), we say skip the glossy gastro-vibe at Holeman & Finch, and hit retro-favorite Sauced. The spot doesn't just do a proper Old Fashioned, its back-button booths, taxidermy and wood paneled walls makes you feel like you've gone back in time.