From after-work happy hours to nights out with friends, bars play a steady role in the social lives of many Americans. Through gritty dive bars or swanky cocktail lounges, we explore new cities and relish in the warmth of local neighborhoods.
Bars are also a critical component of the hospitality industry, and provide stable employment for professionally trained bartenders and aspiring experts alike. While it’s unsurprising that states with cities that contain large metro populations (like New York or Texas) would have a greater number, it’s interesting to note that the bar scene flourishes to different degrees nationwide.
Location, general population size, and post-Prohibition liquor laws all play a factor in the number of bars a state can house — the latter especially true for control states, which oversee liquor sales instead of providing private licenses. To avoid being classified as a bar meant only for alcohol sales, restaurants in New Hampshire, for example, serve alcohol more frequently.
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Supporting data sourced from the United States Census Bureau shows that several of the 17 control states (along with New Hampshire) have fewer bars, likely due to how they are classified and reported. The data, which tracks county business patterns, come from a range of sources including the Economic Census, the Annual Survey of Manufactures, and Current Business Surveys, and records from administrations like Social Security and the Internal Revenue Service.
But even with the foggy legalities surrounding alcohol distribution, the number of bars or establishments serving alcohol is bound to increase. So, which states are packed with watering holes? Take a look below to find out to satisfy your curiosity — you may be surprised to see just how many occupy your current or home state.
Source: United States Census Bureau
Data Year: 2019
Note: Outliers may be a representation of how data is reported to the United States Census Bureau
The Number of Bars By State
|State||# of Bars|
The Number of Bars Per Capita By State
|State||Per Capita (100,000)|
Published: June 2, 2022
Which U.S. state has the most bars? ›
|State||# of Bars|
According to Inforum's report on U.S. Census Bureau business patterns, North Dakota just happens to be the state with the most bars per capita. Numbers-wise, the state has one bar for every 1,620 North Dakota residents.What states have more bars than grocery stores? ›
The map shows what another group of cartographers dubbed the “Beer Belly of America,” the region around Wisconsin, Minnesota and the Dakotas where bars outnumber grocery stores by wide margins.What cities have the most bars per square mile? ›
Pittsburgh ranks high in many categories -- like sports teams and public swimming pools -- but one area stands out. "Pittsburgh ranks number one in terms of the access to bars so that's both the number of bars per capita and the number of bars per square mile," notes Gonzalez. That's right.What are the top 5 most drunk states? ›
Unsurprisingly, the most densely populated states in the U.S. consume the most alcohol by volume. California leads the pack with 85.7 million gallons consumed in 2020. Texas, Florida, New York, and Illinois round out the remainder of the top five. Conversely, Wyoming, Alaska, and South Dakota consume the least.What is the city with most bars? ›
Billed as the Entertainment Capital of the World, Vegas is a 24-hour city with something to cater for any kind of night, with 41.89 bars listed for every 100,000 people.What is the drunkest state in the United States? ›
Wisconsin is the drunkest state in America, according to research conducted by 24/7 WallSt, utilizing data from Country Health Rankings. 25.2% of Wisconsin adults drink heavily, which is 6% more than the national average.What is the number 1 state excessive drinking? ›
Wisconsin, Iowa and North Dakota have the highest binge drinking rates in the country according to data from medication access company NiceRx, at 25.8 percent, 24.5 percent and 22.7 percent, respectively.Who has the most bars per square mile in USA? ›
It's no secret that drinking establishments are a part of a college town, especially a college football town. Athens takes it to a completely and utterly ludicrous level. There are 80 bars in a single square mile.What street has the most bars in the US? ›
Beale Street – Memphis, Tennessee. In music (particularly blues), Beale Street is one of the most famous places in the world.
What state has more bars than churches? ›
It is impossible to tell from the map, but in San Francisco there were 345 bars and only 283 religious organizations, meaning there still are “more bars than churches” in San Francisco (though the situation is nothing like it was in 1866!) San Francisco is the only county in California for which this is true.What is the bar capital of the world? ›
New York City
Defending its position as global cocktail leader is America's most populous city, which has the greatest number of bars named in the ranking of anywhere in the world.
That's right: 78701 has the highest number of bars per capita in the entire country. According to RealtyTrac, 78701 has 88 bars — one for every 67 people. That puts us way ahead of the No. 2-ranking ZIP code, 01103 in Springfield, Massachusetts.Which state is strictest on alcohol? ›
Kansas's alcohol laws are among the strictest in the United States. Kansas prohibited all alcohol from 1881 to 1948, and continued to prohibit on-premises sales of alcohol from 1949 to 1987. Sunday sales only have been allowed since 2005. Today, 3 counties still do not permit the on-premises sale of alcohol.What state drinks the least? ›
Lowest Alcohol Consumption by State
The 10 states with the lowest alcohol consumption levels are Utah, Maryland, Idaho, Arkansas, Kentucky, Connecticut, Georgia, New York, Oklahoma, and Washington. In terms of alcohol consumption per capita, Utah has the lowest rate of only 17.7 gallons consumed per person.
1. Wyoming. Wyoming leads the nation in drunk driving deaths per 100,000 people, according to the NHTSA.What is the number one bar night in America? ›
Blackout Wednesday (also known as Drinksgiving) refers to binge drinking on the night before the Thanksgiving holiday in the United States.What is the busiest bar day in America? ›
Thanksgiving Eve Is Traditionally the Busiest Bar Night of the Year.What is the biggest bar night in America? ›
The night before Thanksgiving is widely known as the biggest drinking night of the year.What nationality drinks the most alcohol? ›
Looking at the amount of alcohol consumed per person aged 15 years or older, the Seychelles is in first place with around 20.5 litres of alcohol drunk per person per year, according to Our World in Data; studies show that young male peer groups primarily drink high amounts of alcohol in the Seychelles.
What is the #1 drunkest city in America? ›
The drunkest city in the United States is Green Bay, Wisconsin. Approximately 26.5% of adults drink to excess. 50.5% of driving deaths in Green Bay involve alcohol. Wisconsin has a total of ten cities in the 20 drunkest cities list, four of them making the top five.What is the strongest liquor sold? ›
Spirytus. Proof: 192 (96% alcohol). Made in: PolandApproved a few years ago to be sold in New York State, the Polish-made Spirytus vodka is the strongest liquor for sale in the U.S. “It's like getting punched in the solar plexus,” one sampler told the New York Post.What is the most dominant city in the US? ›
New York is the most populated city in the United States. Three cities in California made the top 10 populated cities: Los Angeles, San Diego, and San Jose. Texas made the list with three cities: Houston, Dallas, and San Antonio. Chicago, Phoenix, and Philadelphia also ranked among the 10 most populated U.S. cities.What percent of Americans go to bars? ›
Why do we go to bars? Of course, not everyone does, but according to a 2017 report, 51 percent of Americans age 21 to 26 typically go to a bar at least once per week, followed by 42 percent of all millennials, 24 percent of Generation Xers, and 19 percent of baby boomers.What city has the longest strip of bars? ›
The longest bar crawl in the world – Leuven, Belgium
Being such a tiny place, the nightlife here is concentrated around the chocolate-box Oude Markt, where you'll find over 40 bars situated back to back, thus giving rise to the world's longest – and easiest – bar crawl.
1. San Francisco, California (16.5)Where is the smallest bar in the United States? ›
What Is the Smallest Bar in the US? Located in the South Florida 'Caribbean' center of Key West, the Smallest Bar Inn is officially the smallest bar in America. The bar specializes in small key lime drinks with a few fruity concoctions thrown in, as there isn't room for much else.What are the 10 oldest bars in America? ›
- 1 White Horse Tavern: 1673.
- 2 The Broad Axe Tavern: 1681. ...
- 3 Old Yarmouth Inn: 1696. ...
- 4 Robert Morris Inn: 1710. ...
- 5 Longfellow's Wayside Inn: 1716. ...
- 6 Colt's Neck Inn: 1717. ...
- 7 Three Tuns Tavern: 1723. ...
- 8 Logan Inn: 1727. ...
Located in downtown Put-in-Bay, on South Bass Island and affectionately called "The Barrel" by many islanders, the Beer Barrel boasts a 405 foot, 10 inch long bar, 160 bar stools, 56 beer taps and a seating capacity of 1,200.Which state is the most religious state? ›
Which US state has the lowest rate of church attendance? ›
- New Hampshire - 33%
- Massachusetts - 33%
- Vermont - 34%
- Maine - 34%
- Connecticut - 43%
- Wisconsin - 45%
- Washington - 45%
- Alaska - 45%
Bud Light is a light lager brewed by Anheuser-Busch that is renowned for its crisp, refreshing flavor and minimal calorie content. For many years, it has been the most popular beverage in the country.Where is beer drunk the most? ›
The country that drinks the most beer per capita is the Czech Republic. It has topped the list for almost 30 years straight, since 1993.What is the number 1 most drank beer in America? ›
Corona and Bud Light are the most well-known beer brands in the United States. Both these brands are recognized by 85% of respondents in the U.S. Next on the list is the most valuable beer brand in the world, Budweiser, reaching a brand awareness of 84%.What is the oldest known bar in the world? ›
Sean's Bar, which dates back to the Middle Ages! Also listed in the Guinness Book of Records for the historicity of the building that houses it, Sean's Bar has been recognised as the oldest bar in the world. It is located in Athlon, a small town on the banks of the Shannon River, in the centre of Ireland.What is the oldest pub or bar in America? ›
The White Horse Tavern is a National Historic Landmark being America's oldest restaurant, having served guests since 1673. The White Horse Tavern was originally constructed as a two-story, two-room residence for Francis Brinley. It was acquired by William Mayes, Sr. and converted to a tavern.Why is a bar called a bar? ›
The term 'bar'- comes from the counter in which drinks are served. Also called a 'saloon', bars are drinking establishments that sell beer, wine, and spirits to consume in house and sometimes provides entertainment.What is America's richest ZIP Code? ›
- 14 ZIP codes in the U.S. have median home prices that exceed $4 million.
- Atherton, Calif. has the most expensive ZIP code for the sixth consecutive year.
- Los Angeles County remains the country's priciest with 21 ZIP codes on the list.
- Atherton, California (94027) Median home sale price in 2022: $9,000,000.
- Sagaponack, New York (11962) ...
- Beverly Hills, California (90210) ...
- Boston (02199) ...
- Fisher Island, Florida (33109) ...
- Water Mill, New York (11976) ...
- Montecito, California (93108) ...
- Ross, California (94957)
|4||New Braunfels, TX||78130|
Which city has best nightlife? ›
Barcelona. Barcelona has been revealed as the best city in the world for nightlife. With more than 639 nightlife attractions, the city has 6.92 attractions every square kilometre.What is the most photographed bar in the United States? ›
1. 230 FIFTH, New York. With a killer view of the Empire State Building, this massive rooftop space is the most Instagrammed bar in the entire country.What is the busiest bar night in the US? ›
23, 2022. It's Thanksgiving Eve, which means tonight is the busiest bar night of the year – at least, that's what national trends and traditions tend to tell us.What state drinks most beer? ›
Ranking the States: Gallons Overall.
Located in downtown Put-in-Bay, on South Bass Island and affectionately called "The Barrel" by many islanders, the Beer Barrel boasts a 405 foot, 10 inch long bar, 160 bar stools, 56 beer taps and a seating capacity of 1,200.What U.S. cities are known for their nightlife? ›
- Las Vegas.
- Miami Beach.
- New Orleans.
- New York City.
- Los Angeles.
- San Francisco.
A “drink” is considered to be:
- 12 ounces of beer.
- 8 ounces of malt liquor.
- 5 ounces of wine.
- 1.5 ounces of 80-proof (40% alcohol content) distilled spirits or liquor.
German, Polish and Irish immigrants all made up a big part of Wisconsin's population in the early 19th century and brought with them a history of drinking and brewing beer, but the geography of their new home state played a large role in making it possible for them to continue brewing traditions, Draeger said.What is the most photographed bar in America? ›
1. 230 FIFTH, New York. With a killer view of the Empire State Building, this massive rooftop space is the most Instagrammed bar in the entire country.What is the #1 college bar in America? ›
And the title of the best college bar in America goes to none other than The Boot, a Tulane favorite. If you're a broke college student, and only have a couple of quarters to spare, you have enough for a drink at 50-cent drink night at The Boot.
What is the number one drinking night in America? ›
Blackout Wednesday (also known as Drinksgiving) refers to binge drinking on the night before the Thanksgiving holiday in the United States.