5 Best Craft Cocktail Bars on Oahu
Nothing beats a day spent on a beautiful Hawaiian beach, and nowhere are they more stunning than on Oahu. From lounging on the warm sand to swimming or surfing in the brilliantly blue water, it’s as close to heaven as you can possibly get. But, while the beach may take over your days, at night, if you’re looking to dip a toe into the local scene, it can be overwhelming to figure out where to go. To take the guesswork out of an excellent night out, we’ve curated a list of five of the best craft cocktail bars on Oahu. Our list includes award-winning cocktails, delicious bites, and some of the best folks in the business. So, read on and start planning your perfect night in Oahu with these craft cocktail bars.
As Hawaii’s first-ever James Beard Award winner for Outstanding Bar, the team at Bar Leather Apron understands the reputation they’ve garnered and works hard to ensure each guest is treated to top-notch service and a beautifully sophisticated experience.
Duo Justin and Tom Park have dedicated themselves to providing a world-class cocktail experience in Honolulu. Their intimate cocktail bar is neatly tucked away on a mezzanine in a financial district office building lobby. And while the location may sound relatively lackluster, the experience is anything but. Here, you won’t find basic frozen Mai Tais, rather, this beloved cocktail has been reimagined into a multi-award-winning masterpiece that features Kiawe wood, which has been smoked in a hand-carved tiki box, signature Old Fashioned varieties, and Hawaii’s most robust whiskey collection, so no matter your preference you’ll find something you’ll love.
Aimed at delivering a luxury experience, parties are held to a maximum of four, and reservations are highly recommended, though walk-ins are welcome based on space. When visiting Honolulu, plan a perfect date night at Bar Leather Apron and let the team mesmerize you with their bespoke creations you’ll be dreaming about long after you return home.
Located in the vibrant Kaka‘ako neighborhood, Bevy takes the “local’s bar” concept and elevates it to a status of memorable craft experience. Offering uniquely designed cocktails that feature local ingredients, the bartenders invite you to embrace the more refined side of “beachy” drinks. Try the Upside Down, a fun take on the classic piña colada featuring fernet, Chartreuse, lime, pineapple, coconut, and lavender; this delicate blend of flavors awakens your palate to what island cocktails can be. With food brought to you by Doner Shack and Mami’s Empanadas, you can enjoy delicious bites while you sip your way through their happy hour specials, beer, or classic cocktails. The slightly hipster environment makes this a great spot for a casual yet unique night out in Oahu.
Manifest’s dynamic atmosphere transforms from a cozy café to a vibrant cocktail bar, and, if you hang around long enough, sometimes even a buzzing nightclub, giving you plenty of opportunities to find the vibe that’s perfect for you. At the forefront of Honolulu’s ever-changing cocktail scene, the team is ushering in an era of innovative flavors and unique twists on beloved classics. Signature drinks such as the Manifest Mule – a blend of Buffalo Trace bourbon, zesty ginger beer, fresh lime, and a unique homemade lilikoi shrub – underscore why it’s a celebrated spot both with locals and tourists alike.
After a sun-soaked day on Oahu’s exquisite beaches, Podmore offers a seamless transition into the night with its elegant offerings. Created by Chef Anthony Rush and Katherine Nomura of Senia fame, this destination in historic Downtown Honolulu invites you to step away from the routine and into a space rich with history and beauty. By day, Podmore serves up a European-influenced brunch featuring the likes of a Full English Breakfast as well as cocktail selections that are as thoughtfully crafted as those you’ll find on the evening menu. After the sun sets, evening guests can indulge in a carefully curated dinner menu that includes everything from caviar to Wagyu Ribeye. With cocktails designed to complement the food, this is anything but an ordinary cocktail bar. Enjoy Podmore day or night, and get a taste of the ever-innovating craft cocktail scene in Oahu.
Our list of craft cocktail bars in Oahu wouldn’t be complete without one true speakeasy. Since opening in 2021, the Blind Ox has been delighting visitors with its Gatsby-esq ambiance and exclusive allure. The whiskey-forward cocktails paired with a sharable Asian/Hispanic fusion tapas-style menu make this a picture-perfect location for a fancy night out on your Hawaii vacation. Pair the Bull and Whip cocktail with the bone marrow tapas and enjoy a perfect marriage of flavors. The Wagyu-washed bourbon blends with the Kiawe Ranch bone marrow, creating a cohesive and delectable finish that is distinctly Hawaii. Reservations are recommended, and you’ll want to dress to impress for this outing.
Plan Your Oahu Escape with Marina Hawaii Vacations
As your Oahu nights come alive at the island’s best craft cocktail bars, why not ensure your days are equally unforgettable? Marina Hawaii Vacations offers the perfect retreat for your island getaway. After savoring the rich flavors and creative mixology that Oahu’s cocktail scene has to offer, retreat to the comfort and luxury of a Marina Hawaii Vacation property. Whether you’re winding down from a night out or gearing up for a day of adventure, we provide the ideal home base. Book your vacation with us today and toast to the trip of a lifetime!