The Ocean Beach bar scene may not be as popular as those in Pacific Beach, Mission Beach or Downtown San Diego, but for many the more laid-back atmosphere and good times are better than anything you can find in the more frequented bars in other parts of the city. The Ocean Beach, San Diego bars have a nice mix of styles including some sports bars, Irish pubs, high-class bars and some smaller hole-in-the-wall bars frequented by locals. Though many of the more frequented bars are located on Newport Avenue, several popular bars can be found on other important OB streets like Voltaire Street, Cable Street, Niagara Avenue and Santa Monica Avenue.
Some of the best bars in Ocean Beach include:
Pizza Port – a small pizza chain of California breweries that sell amazing hand-tossed pizzas to go with dozens of micro-brews. The laid back atmosphere and large seating area make this one of the most popular bars in Ocean Beach. 1956 Bacon Street.
Nick’s At the Pier – Sports bar and restaurant located on the second floor near the lifeguard station. Sports enthusiasts enjoy bar seating, table seating or couches to watch the game on many high definition televisions while eating grill food and drinking pitchers of a variety of beers. 5083 Santa Monica Avenue. Nick’s has a two rooms, the first contains the large bar and leather chair seating area ideal for watching the game and the other is more of a family style restaurant.
Gallagher’s Pub – One of the busier bars on Newport Avenue offering the occasional live music. Similar to The Harp, this Irish pub consistently attracts a large crowd on weekend nights of the party crowd type who go between pints of Guinness and shots while enjoying a cool bar, great location, music and meeting new people. 5046 Newport Avenue.
Blue Parrot Bar and Grill – A Caribbean feel with plenty of outdoor seating attracts those looking for the typical Mexican food and delicious margaritas. 4993 Niagara Avenue.
Pacific Shores Cafe – This ocean themed bar with its sea life murals, curved bar and jukebox which plays the hits from the 1970’s and 1980’s is one of the more upscale drinking establishments in Ocean Beach and is located a couple blocks from the beach on Newport Avenue. Pacific Shores Cafe is the place for cheap drinks and the ultimate Ocean Beach vibe and one of the most popular bars on Newport Avenue. 4927 Newport Avenue.
Newport Pizza and Ale House – The popular late-night spot to grab that final beer and fill your stomach on large slices of New York style pizza. 5050 Newport Avenue.
Tony’s – Laid back atmosphere offering cheap drinks and specializing in Martini’s, Tony’s is one of several bars right next door to each other on Newport Avenue and generally attracts a slightly older crowd to its 1970’s throwback bar which offers a place to play pool, outside patio and a jukebox. 5034 Newport Avenue.
Sunshine Company Saloon – This place is not usually regarded as one of the top ten Ocean Beach bars by any stretch, and it is probably the drinking spot most unlike the OB atmosphere you would enjoy at most other bars in the neighborhood. The one positive is that there is a Mexican restaurant inside serving burritos, tacos and other popular Mexican dishes. 5028 Newport Avenue.
Cheswick’s West – Biker bar on Newport Avenue with Harley Davidson’s always parked out front. The visitors are almost always leather wearing, tough guys and a typically older crowd. Drinks are a bit pricey for OB, but usually come with a heavy pour. 5038 Newport Avenue.
Harp – The Harp is an Irish bar that is very crowded regularly because there is no cover, live music, a dance floor and some wide screen televisions. The place is not the cheapest, but the bartenders stay very busy as this is one of the places nearly everyone considers having a drink at when bar hopping in Ocean Beach. 4935 Newport Avenue.
Vine – Wine and dine with a great selection of wines and delicious foods. On a semi-busy night this place has a great atmosphere. Best time to visit is during their happy hours where you can get your wine sampling on at half price. 1851 Bacon Street.
Winston’s Beach Club – just off Newport Avenue on Bacon Street often has a cover charge which is something that is not common in OB, but that is because there is always something going on here like live music or comedy acts. Small bar at this small venue, but the Reggae music and other live entertainment is usually great. Winston’s Beach Club’s live music and fun runs every night of the week in a place popular amongst San Diego locals. 1921 Bacon Street.
Tower Two Cafe – The small bar located below Nick’s at the Pier is more of a place to grab an inexpensive lunch while eating on the patio with a great view of the Pacific Ocean. 5083 Santa Monica Avenue.
The Tilted Stick – The Stick is away from the Newport Avenue crowds and therefore has become one of the most popular local bars in Ocean Beach. On Voltaire Street, this dive bar is the place you will find many OBcians visiting regularly. 4927 Voltaire Street.
Tiny’s Tavern – Fantastic food, cheap beers and an awesome patio make this an increasingly popular local’s bar located at 4745 Voltaire Street.
Lucy’s Tavern – Another locals bar on Voltaire Street which is best known for having pool tables, Foosball and shuffleboard games. This cash-only bar has a pretty good happy hour and jukebox music. 4906 Voltaire Street.
South Beach Bar and Grill – Easily one of the busiest bars in OB because not only can you watch the sunset, the ocean and those walking on Newport Avenue from inside but the South Beach Bar and Grill has the best, the absolute best fish tacos you will find anywhere. 5059 Newport Avenue.
The overall feeling of the Ocean Beach bar scene may indeed make you feel you are back in the fun times of the 1960’s, so next time you are looking to enjoy a night out with some friends consider the bar hopping experience of OB that you will not be able to find anywhere else.