Bratislava Bars

Café Rýchlik- If you don't like hanging out at the station waiting for that night train, stroll down the hill and settle yourself here at the place called "Express." The Topvar is cheap, as is the borovička, vodka or any other hardball that'll make your journey more bearable. Just allow yourself 10 minutes to catch that train. $. Ostredková 1. % 293-663. < 11:00-1:00.

Centrum Pub- The pink, sparkly Senátor has given way to the less eccentric, more noisy and smokey Centrum. New management has made better use of more space, allowing for a small, mellow bar one flight below street level and a bigger bar with blaring dance music two flights down. After midnight, the first level down is a good option. The wooden furniture is tasteful, the fantastic posters are not. $$. Župné nám. 3. % 533-4303. < 17:00-02:00.

Charlie's Pub- A well-known late night bar and disco. Open until 4:00 a.m. Packed with foreigners and Slovaks alike - often a heavy drinking crowd with loud American music from the 70's and 80's. $$. Špitálska 4, % 363-396. < 10:00-4:00 M-Sa.

Danglár- Popular watering hole for foreigners (especially the English teachers' community) and Slovaks. Smoke can be life - threatening. Get there early if you want a table. $$. Hviezdoslavovo nám. 17. < 10:00-2:00 M-Sa.

Fortuna Dance Centrum- In a city lacking dance halls and places that remain open late into the night, Fortuna offers both. Right next to Hotel Forum. $$. Drevená ulica. < 20:00-5:00 M-Sa.

Harley-Davidson Saloon- Next to the cemetery in Ružinov, you're likely to find leather-clad bikers dismounting from their choppers and swaggering into this place, which looks like it's from a Hollywood movie set. Inside, they've got pool tables, pinball, poker machines, and more than 40 kinds of whiskey. Food starting at 5 p.m. includes guláš, hamburgers, steak tartar, sausages. $$. % 423-585. < 10:00-22.00

KGB- Descend into this dark, narrow cellar and find one of the city's new hot spots. A young Slovak crowd jams the place on weekends. A rare combo of Charlie's and U Club clientele. Thirsty Monk is on tap. $$ Obchodná ul. < 10:00-24.00.

Koník- Western style pub with memorabilia covering the walls. A comfortable place to hang out. Come ready to drink, there is no food served. $$. Mlynské nivy 8, 367-511. < 10:00-22:00 M-Su.

Mamut- One of the biggest beer halls in Central Europe serves Budvar drafts by the truckload. Swing your spurs on Fridays to live Country music or sit back and relax with Thursdays' jazz. Make table reservations in advance. $. Cintorínska 32, % 321-151. < 10:00-24:00 M-Su.

Mamutko- If you want to experience the traditional Slovak lifestyle, the hours here are for you. This Central European O.K. Corral has few seats and the logs you lean against have little padding for the fanny. Soup and sausage are available to fill your stomach. $. Nám. Slobody 1. < 6:30-21:30 M-Sa.

Monaco Club- Two flights below ground in the Hotel Danube, this is a hangout for Slovaks dressed for success. The big, beautiful pool table, large-screen TV and open dance floor make this place extremely comfortable. Be ready to put your money where your mouth is: A small beer is 56 Sk and mixed drinks can be three or four times that. $$$. Rybné nám. 1, % 5340-000. < 20:00-4:00 M-Su.

Queens Club Mercury- Are you a champion of the world? Do you want to fly like Superman? Then ride your bicycle into this shrine to Freddy Mercury and his legendary band, Queen. With the band's classics piping in non-stop and portraits of the guys adorning the walls, the only thing that could make the experience more complete would be Freddy's embalmed body standing in the corner. $$$. Panenská. < 18:00-1:00 M-Su.

Queens Pub- Small pub with good music - dancing on the tables is both permitted and encouraged. This may be the only bar in Bratislava serving Guinness and other imported beers on tap. The only drawback is the location. Prepare to take night bus or cab. $$$. Nobelova 32. % 369-007.

Rock Café Bratislava- This modern bar next to the ice rink has a slick-but-comfortable feel. That may be a result of the occasional performances by a Frank Sinatra impersonator. Sit at tall stools to partake of the large range of drinks and small menu of grill meats; d.j. and pool table too. $$. Trnavská cesta. % 360-312. < 12:00-4:00.

Satellite Bar- This raucous joint in Lamač serves a rough and ready crowd that is highly excitable. Dancing is a strong component to the mating game here, which means it is not hard to grab one of the two pool tables, even on weekends. Three types of drafts for under 22 Sk keeps the crowd happy. $. Borinská 12. % 782-564. < 18:00-4:00.

Smíchovský Dvor- Well-priced and tasty Slovak specialties. Staropramen flows from the tap. Nestled on a back street around the corner from Obchodná ul. with a Bavarian facade. $. Mariánska 6. % 324-163. < 10:00-22.00

Smirnoff Klub- Downstairs next to Hotel Krym, Smirnoff gives Šafárikovo námestie some sorely needed life. Service can be slow, so take the opportunity to hit the dance floor - one of Bratislava's more inviting ones. $. Štúrova ulica. < 18:00-2:00

Steps- Bratislava's newest hot spot is a revamped version of its socialist predecessor. You won't find any people who are holdovers from that time here either. Witness the advent of choice: one room is a mini beer hall, another passes as a pick up bar and the third is for those who want to boogie. And pay homage to heady times ruled by the young at heart. Though it may be a rumor, it's said to be ventilated. $. Panenská ulica. < 18:00-3:00

Tri Sudy- Duck through one of the passages on Nám. SNP and you will find a brown and white vináreň appropriately called "three casks." You don't have to be Slovak to appreciate the funny cartoons of Slovak politicians and other celebs hanging on the walls. You do have to be Slovak to understand what the cartoons mean. With a downstairs section that can seat about 25 people and is open for reservations, this is a central place to start any evening destined to finish downtown anyway. $. < 10:00-23:00.

U Club- Nuclear shelter turned night club under the Hrad and right next to the tunnel where the trams run. Plays deafening music. Open until 4:00 a.m. for dancing. Good last stop after a night on the town in Bratislava. 20 Sk cover charge. $. Nabr. gen. Ludvíka Svobodu between the SNP bridge and Žižkova ul. < 10:00-2:00 M-Sa.

U Eda- The stuffed animal heads on the wall are sure to be a big hit. Easy to pick out this two-room eating and drinking establishment from the street - just look for the frosty beer mug sign hanging above the door. $$. Biela ul. 5. % 371-822. < 10:00-22:00 M-Su.

U Hemi- Named after Ernest Hemingway, his framed signature hangs on the wall. One can imagine the author dwelling here, with the atmosphere loud and the smoke thick. Foreigners would stick out, but the pub fraternity would hardly notice as beers are pounded like there is no tomorrow. In the back room, order up a bowl of mighty goulash or a plate of pork and potatoes for low prices. $$. Šašinková 1. < 9:30-21:30 M-F; 10:00-21:30 Sa-Su.

Vináreň 44- A typical Slovak vináreň, (wine cellar), - but watch out if you get seated down in the cellar - it can get mighty chilly on a cold night. The first room on the right is dim and cozy with beautiful wood-paneled walls. $$$. Vysoká 44, % 361-167.

Dining Key

Meals: $ = under 100 Sk per entrée
$$ = 100-200 Sk
$$$ = over 200 Sk
CC = Are credit cards taken?
Eng. Menu = Is an English menu available?
Res. = Are reservations suggested?
< = Hours open
% = Telephone number

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