Entrepreneur Spills Its Picks for the Best Business Bars in America

Jul 12, 2011, 06:00 ET from Entrepreneur Magazine

IRVINE, Calif., July 12, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Entrepreneur's second annual "Best Business Bars" feature reveals 2011's top establishments for out-of-office business meetings and events, whether for rubbing elbows with potential investors or celebrating a big win. After traversing the country, the writers of the July special report give business owners an insider's guide to getting something more fruitful than cocktails out of happy hour: namely, a business deal.  

Most entrepreneurs agree that the relationships formed over a drink can change the very course of business. Oftentimes, it comes down to where they choose to make that happen. "Entrepreneurs are judged on the selections they make, and the bar they choose to conduct business is no exception," says Amy Cosper, VP and editor in chief of Entrepreneur magazine. "When they are comfortable enough with the place, the staff and the overall vibe, that bar operates as a pseudo-office—a go-to place to get things done."

This year, writers sought out the best bars for a variety of business situations. The best bar for renting a stylish meeting place? A private, boardroom-style dining room loaded with a drawdown screen and iPod docking station at the Eastern Standard Kitchen & Drinks in Boston. When food, drinks and business negotiation are all on the agenda, clients are sure to be impressed. The best bar to show off your classic style? The Lobby Bar in Louisville, KY has enough character in its large leather chairs, ornate painted ceilings and antique mirrored wood bar to take any business persona up a few notches simply by association.

The full special report reveals Entrepreneur's list of the Best Bars for Business to...

  • Show Off Your Classic Style: The Lobby Bar – Louisville, KY
  • Celebrate a Big Win: The Chandelier – Las Vegas
  • Hang With Hipsters: Teardrop Cocktail Lounge – Portland, Ore.
  • Hide Out When Business Goes Bad: Holland House Bar and Refuge–Nashville, Tenn.
  • Get Some Work Done: Bookstore Bar – Seattle
  • Get the Business Scoop: The Purple Pig – Chicago
  • Get More of the Business Scoop: Elixir – San Francisco
  • Rub Elbows With a VC: Tom & Jerry's – New York City
  • Rent a Stylish Meeting Place: Eastern Standard Kitchen & Drinks – Boston
  • Network Without Spending Big Bucks: Copa d'Oro– Santa Monica, Calif.
  • Find a Behind-the-Bar Mentor: Marquee Grill & Bar – Dallas
  • Get Green Inspiration: Brooklyn Bar – Brooklyn, NY

Most important to establishing a sense of place is the understated, yet powerful patron-bartender bond. It's the secret weapon to help close the deal, have a territorial edge and get served before everyone else. This refreshing relationship is epitomized in the tale of "Frank" as told by a bartender, who helped his regular close deals with clients masterfully (see page 132).

The 2011 special report also shows readers how to find the place that's right for them, the trick to successful team-building during trivia night, and a group discussion of entrepreneurs sharing their recipes for success, named "Business & a Beer."

To read the entire "Best Business Bars" special report, pick up the July issue of Entrepreneur and visit www.entrepreneur.com/bestbusinessbars.

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SOURCE Entrepreneur Magazine