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Faultline, Los Angeles
With parties like Big Bad Wolf and “Take It Off” Thursdays, where patrons check their pants at the bar, Faultline is a favorite among edgier Angeleno bears, who also come to admire the neon penis shooting lights of semen across the room and gay porn playing on numerous screens.
Amanda. R from Dallas: “I freaking love this bar. Sleazy retro hardcore porn on the TV screens, dirty and edgy, reminds me of an old leather bar from days gone by … eye candy in their underwear … cheap beer … I always feel at home and comfortable among the boys.”
Namelia K. from Los Angeles: “My FAVORITE gay bar ever … Enter through rear ... (yes, I know) then you step away into this courtyard/land of Oz but instead of Munchkins, there's gay guys and hardcore gay porn on every flat screen in the joint, instead of the Wizard, I had Matt, my bartender bear hunk, who whispered to me, ‘Is this your first time? It's not one of those 'whoo!whoo!' WeHo gay bars here...’ with that I was in love. Madly, devastatingly in deep, profound love…”
“No surprise, the girl's room was pristine!”
Mildred F. from Los Angeles: “If you like to smoke, drink cheap beer and watch porn this is the bar for you! ... There is an old speed freak who dances that is worth the drive to watch. He is insanely funny.”
SF Eagle, San Francisco
SF Eagle is a legendary, predominantly leather bar. But we all know bears who love them some leather, and we’d be remiss to have a list of bars and not mention SF Eagle. With theme nights and a heated patio, there’s plenty of opportunities to find that hot bear to warm you up on those cold San Francisco nights.
Rebecca G. from San Francisco: “I love the Eagle Tavern and the Beer Busts are awesome … Parking my Harley on the sidewalk is an added benefit…”
Lisa T. from Oakland, Calif.: “The first time I ever set foot in the Eagle … It was the memorable night of ‘these cheats are drink!’ fame, and the kickass bartender who looked like Sammy Hagar, and the gay porn, and oh the good times…”
Shelly D. from Chicago: “Learning to pace my drinks because if you dare pound your drinks at the Eagle you will NOT last very long. The bartenders aren’t the friendliest but that’s the only real way it should be at a biker bar … after two or three drinks you will just about piss anywhere at this place.”
Brittany L. from Becket, Mass: “I don’t know what it is about the Eagle, but I really cannot just order a beer. It has to come with a shot of whiskey, and then the trouble begins.”
Libby T. from San Francisco: “One of my fondest memories … is taking my midwestern straight cornfed parents to the Eagle … They still get a kick out of telling their waspy friends about watching a guy wearing nothing but leather caps smoke a joint.”
Diesel Seattle, Seattle
Seattle is a great place to be if you like your men like you like your coffee: tall, strong, and wearing flannel. Diesel is the best place to find your northwestern boo-bear, because it “has all the awesome with none of the pretensions.”
Daisy H. from Seattle: “I can think of no place I’d rather drink with strangers while watching screens full of hirsute men making out. And I say that without a trace of sarcasm. Diesel has SUCH a good vibe.”
Rockbar, New York City
If you’re on the hunt for bears in the Big Apple, look no further than Rockbar on Christopher Street. If you love to sing or love a guy who can sing, make sure you swing by karaoke. The bar proudly proclaims, “We’re cheap and proud of it,” and who doesn’t love a bear who can budget?
Eva T. from New York City: “I started this review when I was still drunk from Rockbar, but I fell asleep because I was still hammered from Rockbar.”
Ty’s Bar NYC, New York City
Like the bar, the boys at Ty’s are comfortable, classic. and born in the ’70s. It is a place to go if you are looking to see the scene without it being a scene. So wear your E-shirts, jeans, and the cap from your favorite team when you come play at Ty’s!
Marna H. from New York City: “The guys who come here are always friendly and outgoing and great [to] share a laugh or two with. Beware of some young girls who have never been into a gay bar and think they own the joint. Just ignore them, though. They don’t know any better, they just weren’t raised right.”
Eagle NY, New York City
Of course, there’s another Eagle in New York, and its reputation precedes itself. There are many levels to enjoy of the Eagle NY, and don’t be shocked if someone wants to show you the deck. It’s got great views.
Rebecca R. from Austin: “I am a femalel Itook my best friend and his fiancé here as part of their bachelor party. I thought it’d be fun for them. They wouldn’t serve me water. They wouldn’t serve me soda. So much for acceptance. Sorry I happened to be a woman.”
Gale S. from Philadelphia: “I went to my first leather party. And I was the only girl, as expected, but I was treated so hospitably which was NOT expected … Expect 3 floors and a roofdeck, debauchey, play, darkness, and expect the unexpected.”
ReviewHaiku F from New York City:
“Gold fag hag status.
Leather-clad men dancing and
Dealing shitty blow.”
Green Lantern, Washington, D.C.
Washington, D.C., is a capital place to be on the hunt for bears, and Green Lantern is where you will find them. Make sure you stop by on first Sunday of the month for the Bears Can Party party, as well as the infamous underwear parties, where scantily clad patrons get drink specials.
Jackie B. from Brooklyn, N.Y.: “I was one of three girls there that night, I had a lot of fun. My friend did tell me that he's never seen a girl there ever, though. I guess it was because of the underwear auction that was going on … I'm sure it's a great place to meet gay guys. And totally don't feel weird about stripping down to your Underoos or going shirtless because pretty much half the bar did…”
Beth W. from Ann Arbor, Mich.: “There's pornography on the TV's by the bar, which is fun to watch and starts conversations … I'd DEFINITELY go back, you can't beat four free drinks just for walking around in a sports bra. Win!!”
Scandals Saloon, Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
If you prefer your bears a little bit more country, make sure you stop by Scandals the next time you are in the Sunshine State. Don’t miss “Bearaoke” on Friday nights if you want to be serenaded (bearenaded?) by a bear.
Carla B. from Miami: “'Let's go to Ssssscandalsss!' said he, hissing his 'S's. My answer was a sing-songy ‘Yessssss!’ Scandals is always busy … Drinks are cheap, but service is slow. However, when you're not in a hurry to get even more drunk than you already are, what the heck! They have a popcorn machine with free, get-it-yourself popcorn that tastes like gourmet snacks when you're drinking.”
The 19 Bar, Minneapolis
Minneapolis was voted the Gayest City in America in 2013, so it’s no surprise that 19 Bar has been around forever and is known for its low-key vibe, cheap drinks, and friendly demeanor. After all, Minnesota Nice is the best way to thaw out that Minnesota Ice.
Annalee T. from Minneapolis: “Standard gay dive. Well-priced pitchers, friendly clientele, a slightly tougher time getting a drink if you're a woman. I like it here because it's casual, gay, and even though it's male-dominated, nobody's ever been a prick to me for being a gay girl in a gay man's world.”
Heather M. from San Jose, Calif.: “This place is OK b/c it is an old gay bar and that I can def respect. The bartenders are over it and so is the general atmosphere of the place. Now that I really think about it, I’m not sure if I'm mixing up this bar with another gay bar in some Midwestern city like Windsor or Columbus. I can't remember.”
The SoFo Tap, Chicago
How could we have a list of Bear bars without including the Bears capital of the U.S., Chicago? (Da Bears!) If you are looking for a guy to show you his Ditka, put on your flannel and head to the corner of Clark and Argyle. In true Midwestern kindness, they make a point of supporting the community, even having Doggy Days for “dogs and their well-behaved owners.” (But we hope not too well-behaved!)
Natalie S. from Chicago: “When did it become a bear bar? I walked in on a Thursday at like 8 p.m. and the bartenders were walking around shirtless, their bulging bellies and man-sweaters on display for all to ‘enjoy.’"
Nikki P. from Elgin, Ill.: “Went to this bar on a Friday night around 10:30. It is def a gay bear bar. More beards in that place than I have ever seen haha. Bartenders are great and make great drinks.”
Alley Bar, Boston
If you like your bears with a thick … accent, make sure you swing by Alley Bar in Boston. Put on your Red Sox and get ready for a good ol’ fashioned T-Party when Alley Bar becomes Bear Central on Saturday nights.
Erica S. from Philadelphia: “Shoot some pool. Drink some beer. Grind on some dudes. Watch mediocre-looking dudes make out in one corner. Feel dirty, yet strangely turned on. Occasionally see a hot dude walk by ... grab his ass … Suddenly realize you are the only woman in the bar. Take a shot. Discuss Madonna. Be a wing (wo)man and get your friend a hot date with the cutie from San Fran. Order another beer. Spill it and refuse to clean it up. Stumble into the alley. Fall down.”