There is plenty of excitement during the day in Asheville, but as a top Southern destination for a girls’ weekend or bachelorette party, many visitors want to know about the nightlife in Asheville. The best bars in Asheville, contrary to popular Beer City USA belief, aren’t all breweries. There are plenty of breezy rooftop bars, classy hole-in-the-wall cocktail bars, and even dessert bars where you’d be surprised by the ambiance and the fun.
Bring your girls to the Blue Ridge Mountains for the gorgeous hiking and outings during the day, but don’t forget about all of the fun things to do in Asheville at night! Here are some of our favorite stops for a girls’ night out in Asheville, highlighting the bars that we enjoy most here in town.
We’re focused on spots that have lots of great energy but also feature top-notch spirits and cocktails, as well as a few of our favorites that have an excellent live music option or great views. Here are our picks for the 15 best bars in Asheville for a girls’ night out!
Don’t forget to check out our web story: The 15 Best Bars in Asheville for a Girls’ Night Out
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1. Ginger’s Revenge
Ginger’s Revenge is a local hard ginger beer company. I know, it’s amazing that the Asheville community can support so many niche brands. However, you’re likely to find at least one Ginger’s Revenge product on tap at many local alehouses, where it rounds out the offerings quite nicely.
The seating area at Ginger’s Revenge is plush and cozy, and there’s often a food truck for eats alongside a variety of cocktails and ginger beers. The signature drink is good, but they often have a variety of infused ginger ales on tap: Lavender Hibiscus, Lime Agave, and Cranberry Herb.
Stop by for seasonal brews and ginger-beer-filled slushies, all of which delight the non-beer-drinker among you while still giving everyone plenty of options. Ginger’s Revenge often has live music, which makes this one of the most fun bars in Asheville for a girls’ night out!
Location: 829 Riverside Dr Suite 100, Asheville
2. Hemingway’s Cuba
If you and your girls love a new experience, we think a dinner or drinks date at Hemingway’s Cuba would be a good start. The Cuban food at this restaurant has won awards as some of the best in North Carolina. Plus, the location in the heart of downtown up above it all on the rooftop is perfect.
The cocktail list includes, of course, a lot of excellent tropical rum drinks, like the Sunset on Pilar, which features Flor De Caña rum, papaya puree, mint, and lime juice. There’s plenty for those who aren’t looking for a rum drink, too – from the Blue Ridge Winter Martini made with Tanqueray Gin and Absolut Peppar Vodka alongside house-infused rosemary and ginger agave and grapefruit and pomegranate juices.
Snack on some house-made yuca fries or ceviche made with a variety of seafood or crunch on plantain chips – you really cannot go wrong! Enjoy the breathtaking mountain views any time of year as you and your girls hang out.
Location: 15 Page Avenue, 4th Floor, Asheville
3. Crave Dessert Bar
Ever walked into a restaurant that looks promising with your friends and realized that, despite a long menu, there’s only one or two dessert options? For the sweet-toothed among us, this is just not okay!
Crave Dessert Bar in downtown Asheville is the perfect answer to the daydream that the dessert list is easily as long as the list of main courses. Crave has dinner options, but the real feast starts with the sweets section, where a long list of cakes available by the slice is just the preamble to a whole selection of desserts.
Got a group of girls who love sweets but just can’t decide? Order a few and share: from the Drunken Tiramisu to the Churro Fondue to the Crème Brulée, this restaurant has all the tasty sweets you desire.
Sip a classy French 75 or a chocolate-intense drink like the “Thicker than a Snicker” full of caramel vodka, Irish cream, and amaretto alongside crème de cocoa. Talk about rich! Definitely make this your primary stop on a girls’ night in Asheville if the birthday girl is a fan of dessert –she’ll be in awe.
4. Pleb Urban Winery
Let’s face it: while a classy night out in downtown is a lot of people’s idea of a girls’ night out in Asheville, there are lots of other ways to make a night out memorable. One of the best bars in Asheville, in my opinion, is the River Arts District’s Pleb Urban Winery. With a huge wall of windows looking out on the district and the French Broad River, the winery is airy and open while holding some of the industrial-chic stylings popular among breweries in town.
These aren’t your grandma’s wines either: while there’s plenty of recognizable varietals, Pleb specializes in young wines and offers many flights that showcase their most unusual flavors. I tried my first sparkling red wine there, and it was unlike anything I’ve ever tried before! As a big fan of a dry, bold red and anything with bubbles, I was instantly a fan.
Location: 289 Lyman St, Asheville
5. Off the Wagon Dueling Piano Bar
If you’ve never been to a dueling piano bar, you’re in for a live-music treat that is part comedy show, part very impressive music show! Two pianists who know tons of songs play tunes the audience requests, both back and forth and playing together to create an unforgettable surround-sound experience.
Things get a little wild sometimes, but you’ll also see a showcase of quite a lot of talent. Off the Wagon does often have a cover as part of how they pay their musicians, but don’t let that deter you. Once inside, the drinks are plentiful, varied, and great for getting the party started.
This 21+ venue is a party atmosphere most nights, loud and silly and a little raunchy at times, but since it’s open till 2 am, it can be a good late-night stop to hang out and goof off. Conveniently located in downtown Asheville, it’s not hard to find transportation afterward – definitely come back for your car after a great time at the piano bar!
Location: 22 N Market St, Asheville
6. 5 Walnut Wine Bar
In contrast to the raucous atmosphere at Off the Wagon, if you prefer your girls’ nights to be a lot calmer, 5 Walnut is a great choice. This wine bar has beautiful impressionistic murals on the walls, with wooden furniture and exposed brick to complete the warm, comfortable setting.
5 Walnut works to offer wines and cheeses that are tied to the local food scene, and they book local bands for nightly live music to give your girls’ night a nice backdrop. For groups who love to sample a lot of different wines, this is a great place to talk to knowledgeable staff about what you might like and try a few different options.
The location in the heart of downtown gives you plenty to watch out the window. If you and your girls have plans to hike, consider the options for taking some cheese, bread, and charcuterie to go as a picnic for your next day. You’ll be glad for the snacks and you’ll enjoy the good atmosphere in the meantime!
Location: 5 Walnut Street, Asheville
7. Pillar Rooftop Bar
When you’ve got something to celebrate, take it to the rooftop bars of Asheville, many of which aren’t noticeable from street level. Don’t worry though – we don’t want you to miss out on the best bars in Asheville, and this one is a must-visit for your girls’ night out!
On the gorgeous rooftop level, groups can try tasty small bites like Spinach Artichoke Puffs, Melon & Prosciutto Skewers, or Cranberry Brie Tartlets. Their cocktails change every season, with winter featuring treats like the Naughty and Spice (rose gin, pear, ginger liqueur, spiced syrup, ginger beer) and the Jack Frost (coconut rum, blue curacao, coconut cream, pineapple juice, and coconut flakes!).
Find this treasure at the Hilton Garden Inn Asheville Downtown. The dining room is enclosed but with big walls of windows to give your girls’ night out in Asheville the best possible backdrop.
8. Ben’s Tune-Up
Do your ladies expect the unexpected while they are visiting Asheville? Ben’s Tune-Up is a great spot all around, but particularly for a group that loves the quirky and unusual in life. A staple of South Slope, this restaurant looks older and a bit non-descript from the outside, but inside, it’s a fascinating indoor-outdoor beer and sake garden serving tasty Asian fusion eats.
Pair your house-brewed sake with Wonton Nachos, a Korean Beef Bowl, and a Blueberry Ginger Roll for dessert. The Ben’s Tune-Up website points out that their locally canned sake is naturally gluten-free, which results in no hangover, which is definitely a good thing when sampling the nightlife in Asheville. If any of your friends are left out of the craft beer experience due to the presence of gluten, this is a great stop for them.
The last fun thing about Ben’s is that it’s fully dog-friendly due to the ample outdoor space in the beer garden, so if your friends bring their Fidos and Spots along, they’ll be more than welcome!
Location: 195 Hilliard Ave, Asheville
9. Top of the Monk
Thirsty Monk Brewery may be a brewery for beer first (literally, the monks that brewed beer in Europe are the inspiration!), but they have created a great new vibe with Top of the Monk, which ranks as one of the best rooftop bars in Asheville as well as a wonderful cocktail bar.
How’s this for exclusivity: you’ll need to pay the “private club” fee ($1 per group at the time of writing), which simply makes it possible to operate the cocktail bar based on the liquor laws in NC. Then head up the stairs for one of the best awe-inspiring views of downtown and the mountains beyond.
They specialize in classic cocktails but always have a few special options for either seasonal cocktails or their particular twist on a classic, like adding sassafras to a traditional Old Fashioned.
Be aware that the vibe is calm, and they keep it that way by only accepting small groups (seven or fewer) and requiring that bachelorette parties leave all their hoopla at the door. That being said, if your girls’ night out is just a few of your closest friends and more calm than wild, you won’t want to miss the perfect composition on these cocktails and the killer view.
Location: 92 Patton Avenue, Asheville
Imperial is a second-story bar above Zella’s Deli. This spot has been home to a lot of restaurants over the years, so you might assume that the second story is the same concept, but if you make your way up the narrow interior stairs, you’ll find a treasure of a mezcal bar.
If your girls are bee-lining for agave spirits like mezcal and tequila when they look over a cocktail menu, they’ll be in heaven at Imperial. They can try a Nitro Margarita, where the standard margarita flavors are infused with nitrogen for a velvety carbonation you have to sample in order to really understand.
The spice lovers can order a Spitting Devil, a bourbon drink with jalapeño in it, or sample their various sotols and mezcals – let the bartender tell you about the origins. The space is lively in the evenings and feels like you’re in the downtown of any major city as you look out at the cityscape through the windows.
Live music often starts around 9 pm, making the vibe more of a party and perfect as one of the best bars in Asheville for a girls’ night out!
Location: 48 College Street, Asheville
11. GiGi’s Underground
When wandering down College Street with your ladies, keep an eye out for a rose mural over a stairwell. It’s more than just a pretty spot of street art; it’s the signal that you’ve found downtown’s resident speakeasy and jazz bar, GiGi’s Underground.
This is definitely not the wild dance club stop for your girls’ night out. GiGi’s delivers the good music, comedy, or other entertainment you are craving but in a very classy, calm atmosphere best for sipping a highly-crafted cocktail and catching up with a friend.
There’s something fun about the exclusivity of the bar. The lack of significant signage allows many to walk right by, but people who know what to look for will be delighted with what they find here. Don’t miss GiGi’s if you’re looking for one of the best cocktail bars in Asheville for a date either, but a girl group that isn’t looking for a rowdy time will have a great time here too!
Location: 122-002 College Street, Asheville
12. Battery Park Book Exchange
Got a crew of ladies who love a good read? Talk books over bubbly at the Battery Park Champagne Bar. Located in the beautiful historic Grove Arcade, this champagne bar is nestled in the heart of a bookstore and filled with interesting architecture and tons to read.
Find a cozy nook and sample champagne flights with your friends as you reminisce, discuss your latest reads, or just catch up with each other. You’ll find live music most evenings Wednesday through Saturday, with an afternoon session on Sunday afternoon, as well as more than 10,000 books that line the shelves throughout the two-story shop.
This is a great stop for a classy and simple lunch, like the Goat Expectations sandwich made with goat cheese, veggies, apricot compote, and bacon. Some of the tastiest salads in town are here, too, including the Little House Salad on the Prairie, which features (what else?) a champagne vinaigrette!
If everyone just wants a nibble, pick from the cheese and charcuterie boards, which are also book-themed. It’s a feast for the mind and the mouth, best enjoyed with a glass of bubbly in hand.
Location: 1 Page Ave., #101, Asheville
13. The Crow & Quill
Going out with your friend who wants the most options possible? The Crow & Quill literally delivers more than 600 whiskeys alone and 1,000 spirits in total! They make tasty seasonal cocktails like the cozy Humble Pie, made with Sacred Bond Brandy and Eda Rhyne Amaro Oscura Rhubarb and finished with blueberry, lemon, and thyme.
The space features mood lighting and tons of antiques, meaning that you and your ladies will always have something to look at and marvel about. There is often live music, but also occasional acts like a live magician. Follow them on social media to keep track of what’s coming up next.
Every group of girls is a little different, but we think that The Crow & Quill fits the bill for one of the most fun bars in Asheville, and its central location in the northern part of downtown allows you to wander to the next destination after you’ve savored your drink.
Location: 106 N Lexington Avenue, Asheville
Many areas have either wineries or breweries that allow you to drink local straight from the source, but Chemist Gin is produced right here in Asheville, leading spirits lovers and locavores alike to rejoice. For your girls who wish they were born in the 1920s, Antidote, the cocktail bar by Chemist Spirits, is a nod to the early 1900s, with stylings like an apothecary and art deco sensibilities.
Antidote is also one of the best rooftop bars in Asheville, but if the weather is bad, you can still party on the other two stories of Antidote. Topping the list of craft cocktails are a set of different gin and tonic drinks that pair high-quality tonics from Fever Tree with botanicals and one of Chemist’s standard gins: Navy Strength, American Gin, or Barrel Rested Gin.
Try The American G&T, which features their signature gin with elderflower tonic, lime peel, and rose petals. There are also seasonal cocktails, which rotate but feature all kinds of unusual flavors: the recent Chimney Swift cocktail, which is said to be bright, smoky, and spicy, features Capel Pisco, mellow corn, spiced fig syrup, lemon, and fig.
Pick your poison or have the group tell the bartender what they like and see what he or she can come up with. These mixologists make everything down to the literal gin itself! Have yourself a roaring good time as you try flavor combos you’ve never seen before.
Location: 151 Coxe Avenue, Asheville
15. Storm Rhum
When it comes to things to do in Asheville at night, there’s a time around 10:30 or 11:00 pm when even the late-night kitchens close and thirsty girl groups who want to keep the good times rolling for a few more stops get a bit hangry. Other girls’ night out groups want a snack that sends them off to bed immediately after, but either way, it’s a good idea to plan a stop somewhere that serves late-night food.
While a few of the city’s kitchens stay open late (I’m partial to a North Asheville joint called the Barrel House that will serve you an out-of-this-world pierogi until 2 am, but we’re focused on the walking zones of downtown right now), Storm Rhum brings both a beautiful bistro atmosphere and a classy bar as well as plenty of options for late-night bar food, served till 1 am.