Few things are more enjoyable than sipping a great whisky in the company of a good friend. But complications arise when your drinking companion has four legs and kibble breath. Fortunately, we’ve uncovered a handful of bars that cater to whisky lovers and their canine counterparts. With impressive whisky lists and perks for your pooch, these dog-friendly destinations are great places to enjoy a whisky with a side of water—served neat, in a bowl.
Taurus Beer & Whisk(e)y House—Miami
This rollicking locals’ bar is both dog and kid-friendly. No food is prepared here, so dogs are permitted throughout the bar, although in fair weather most guests opt for the outdoor patio area. In addition to comedy night, trivia contests, and live music, Taurus offers a serious whisky list numbering around 140 selections. The whisky-laden cocktail menu includes classics, like a Four Roses Boulevardier, and originals, like Breakfast at Taurus: bacon-infused rye whiskey and Licor 43.
For you: Whisk(e)y Wednesday – 30 percent off all whisky, all day. No exceptions.
For furry friends: Dog-safe treats from local Rocco’s Barkery.
Clark Street Ale House—Chicago
With dark wood walls and a pressed-tin ceiling, this well-worn tavern is a holdover in the upwardly trending River North neighborhood. Choose from over 300 whiskies on offer or browse 25 tantalizing taps of craft beer. Dogs are welcome in the rear garden and inside the bar, with complimentary water and treats provided. Clark Street also gives back to the canine community, hosting frequent fundraisers for shelters and adoption services.
For you: Cherry-pick the list for gems like Ardbeg Corryvreckan from 2009 ($17).
For furry friends: Holiday events, like a Halloween dog costume contest.
Blue Pit BBQ & Whiskey Bar—Baltimore
Smoked meat, plenty of bourbon, and furry companionship abound in this top-class barbecue joint that welcomes dogs to their outdoor area with its backyard picnic vibe. A heavily American list of over 100 whiskies includes rotating selections of private bottlings from Buffalo Trace and Four Roses. In addition to hosting fundraisers for several local dog rescues, Blue Pit posts a wall with photos of dogs currently up for adoption, so you might just find your next love in a barroom after all.
For you: The “Reserve” list, including treasures like William Larue Weller 2017 ($30).
For furry friends: Dog hoodies to keep cozy in winter and bandanas in the summer.
d.b.a.—New York City
This dark East Village institution remains an authentically gritty throwback. The focus is on beer, with well over 100 offerings, but the chalkboard also boasts a respectable selection of single malt standard bearers and sipping tequilas. Dogs are welcome throughout the bar, and the enclosed patio, resembling a greenhouse, is heated in fall and winter. Expect deep crowds on weekends as the party pushes on until 4 a.m.
For you: Pair your whisky with a pastrami sandwich from the famous Katz’s Delicatessen—or any other carry-in food.
For furry friends: Reserve the patio to host a doggie birthday party.
Holy Water—San Francisco
This highbrow cocktail haunt looks straight out of the Restoration Hardware catalog, with mismatched glass shades on the pendant lights and an image of a river baptism on the wall. The illustrated cocktail menu includes both classic and original bourbon drinks (all $10), while the list of around 60 whiskies boasts a smattering of Compass Box and some cult craft finds, like Willett Family Estate rye ($9). Dogs of all sizes are welcome throughout the bar.
For you: At 11 p.m. nightly, bartenders break out exotic spirits and test market new cocktails.
For furry friends: No longer confined to the floor, dogs can take a seat at the bar.