Prancing Around Prague's Posh Bars

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Photo of Prancing Around Prague's Posh Bars by Devika Maheshwari

Stony Walkways, Gothic Churches, and Colorful Baroque Buildings is what one sees in Prague’s daylight. But once the sun sets and the night falls, Prague changes its characteristic from a quaint, historic town to an oasis of crafty cocktails, unique ambiance and great music.

Prague’s must-go bars.

Day 1

Hemingway Bar- Possibly one of Prague’s hottest bars. They take up reservations just till 9 pm and getting in after that without a wait is next to impossible. This is due to the size of the bar. A two-story dimly lit bar, next to the river that can seat only about 20 or so. The bar has about three-four bartenders who specialize in mixology. You tell them what alcohol you want, fruity or not, strong or light and they engineer delectable drinks for you. Two of my friends didn’t have any preferences when it came to alcohol so they asked the bartenders to serve them their best. Later, one of them got was an exclusive absinthe drink while the others bubbled with the smell of champagne. That is when we got to know that Hemingway Bar has the richest collection of absinthe, rum and champagne in Prague.

As for my drink, I think what they did with it was something I had never seen.

I ordered a cocktail which arrived in a fancy cardboard box. After I opened the box a perfume bottle appeared that had my drink in it. Needless to say, the drink was amazing and exactly what I had wanted. That drink coupled with the classy aura of the place made me want to take back a souvenir. I asked the waiter if I could keep the fancy cardboard box that my drink arrived in. She told me she had to check and when she came back my box was signed and quoted by all the bartenders. An impeccable service like that should not go unmentioned.

Image Credits- Hemingway Bar

Photo of Hemingway Bar, Old Town, Prague-Prague 1, Czechia by Devika Maheshwari
Photo of Hemingway Bar, Old Town, Prague-Prague 1, Czechia by Devika Maheshwari

Cash Only- As the name suggests you have to pay by cash. But that’s not all, they give you cash in return. Founded by the creators of the Hemingway Bar, Cash only gives you dollar bills with each drink. However, these bills aren’t for commercial purposes, which I learned after I saw one them floating in my drink. They are meant to devour, gobble and enjoy. But it’s not only the dollar bills that attracts people, it’s also the personalized service. For instance, instead of us going to the bar a bartender came to us and had a good 5-minute talk with each of us to understand what we liked or not so that our drink came out perfect. However, as compared to Hemingway, its sister bar, there were major differences. While Hemingway was classy and superior, with its own rules, Cash Only was a little simpler and a tad funkier with its only no-reservation rule and its trendy alcohol presentation. Hemingway would be where one would go to start the night and Cash Only would be where one would go to end the night. Hemingway would seem more like a date spot whereas Cash Only would become a spot for close group gatherings. All in all, both different but both great.

Image Credits- Cash Only

Photo of Cash Only Bar, Liliová, Old Town, Prague-Prague 1, Czechia by Devika Maheshwari
Photo of Cash Only Bar, Liliová, Old Town, Prague-Prague 1, Czechia by Devika Maheshwari
Photo of Cash Only Bar, Liliová, Old Town, Prague-Prague 1, Czechia by Devika Maheshwari

Parlour- Similar to Cash Only and Hemingway, Parlour had a seating about 20 people too. But unlike those finding this bar was a little tricky. After Google maps led us to its location we had to find a flight of stairs that actually let us in to the bar. When we came face to face with the bar my mind drifted back home as you step in to see an average cozy living room with simple wooden tables and a rugged doormat. But as you march in your eyes divert to the owners of the living room who have transformed into bartenders for the night. They go around meeting and greeting everyone and serve you drinks that you don’t see embossed on any menu. As for music they chose slow jazz to fill up the silence and create the perfect setting for an intimate evening. Keeping the intimacy in mind I remember that the bar also limits reservations up to only four people, luckily that was us. Nonetheless, Parlour is a must to go for anyone who isn’t entertained by simple drinks like whiskey on the rocks, or a dirty martini and would instead enjoy a serving of vintage cocktail glasses filled with fine alcohol mixed in Japanese style.

Day 2

Black Angel- Some might refer to it as one of Prague’s sightseeing points. Located in the U Prince hotel of Old Town Square, the bar is centrally placed and easy to find. This might seem like an advantage but is not as it is usually crowded. We got to know this once we had a personal talk with the bartender. He told us that Black Angel was the only bar that served personal recipes created by Alois Krcha, a man who devoted his life to revolutionize the art of bartending, which led to millions entering through its doors. And in order to give the millions their best and to trademark themselves as Prague’s best cocktail bar, the Black Angel had invested heavily in crafting its own unique glasses to give an overall different experience with each drink. An experience that I believe was elevated by the setting the bar is placed in. As you go down the stairs you enter a cave which is lit by multitude shelves that are filled with fine spirits. Vintage pieces like pocket watches, treasure chests, and fake gold coins are spread out. The waiters are dressed in 1930’s wardrobe and the room is refined with a touch of soft jazz music or a live piano performance. An ideal spot to for ladies to shine their pearls and for men to flash their gold ring at.

Image Credits- Black Angel

Photo of Black Angel’s Bar, Old Town, Prague-Prague 1, Czechia by Devika Maheshwari

Tretter’s- Renowned as one of the world’s best bar, Tretter’s is a New York style bar standing with its head high since 1928. Gastronomic and Barman tradition oozes as you walk past the buff bouncer on the door and find your seat at one of the mahogany tables. The red décor calls for a trendy crowd and the loud music makes you leave your seats and dance. For millennials like me who don’t mind packed crowds when it comes to dancing and drinking, this bar caps Prague’s nightlife. However, unlike other bars there was one exciting feature which we didn’t expect them to have, that is, food. Once our feet started hurting and our stomachs started grumbling real late in the night we asked the waiter if there was a food truck or a small pizza joint open nearby. The waiter smiled and presented us with a food menu and in that moment this bar superseded all. It became the perfect stop to finish up with Prague and its nightlife.

Image Credits- Tretter's

Photo of Tretter's, V Kolkovně, Prague-Prague 1, Czechia by Devika Maheshwari

Image Credits- Tretter's

Photo of Tretter's, V Kolkovně, Prague-Prague 1, Czechia by Devika Maheshwari
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