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9 Iconic Dive Bars Across Charleston

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Big John's Tavern, King of the Dives[Photo: Facebook]

The Holy City isn't exactly known for its seedy clubs and gritty bars. But there are a few places to get reasonably-priced brews that haven't gone all chichi with the decor and won't necessarily be serving you with a sidecar of Southern hospitality. Or if they are pouring your drink with a smile, it's likely because you're a regular. In honor of Cocktail Week, cast aside your gingham bow tie and raise a sturdy glass to Charleston's slightly less polished (though no less adored) places to tipple the day away.

Don't throw cans of PBR at your laptop if your favorite was overlooked. Just tell us which bars you think should be on the list in the comments.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. A.C.'s Bar & Grill

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467 King St.
Charleston, SC 29403-6231
(843) 577-6742
A.C.'s is the kind of place that'll make you feel your age. Those who've hit a certain number will likely start whining about how loud and crowded it is, especially on weekends. But, as one Yelper said, "This place pretty much lets you do whatever the heck you want." Toss that in with their cheap drinks and eats, and it's got a certain timeless appeal.

2. The Griffon Pub

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18 Vendue Range
Charleston, SC 29401
(843) 723-1700
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The bills and brews are plentiful at this English-style pub. Smack-dab in the middle of the touristy part of town, The Griffon has a soul and, in the words of their website is "STILL KICKIN' ASS."

3. Upper Deck Tavern

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353 King St
Charleston, SC 29401
(843) 958-0002
Ah, to be in college again. This dive caters to the under-25 set, but given it's somewhat hidden location, it's possible to stumble across Upper Deck and stay for the cheap drinks.

4. Moe's Crosstown Tavern

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714 Rutledge Avenue
Charleston, SC 29403
(843) 722-3287
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It's hard to gauge the exact percentage of Wagener Terrace residents that pour in for Burger Night, but it often feels like the entire neighborhood is crammed in there. It's low-key, full of locals and homier than the exterior gives away.

5. Big John's Tavern

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251 East Bay St.
Charleston, SC 29401
(843) 723-2382
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With lots of specials on the chalkboard and bras on the ceiling, Big John's seems to breed debauchery. Even their phone number spells out DIVE. But with The Green Door moving into the back, they might be cleaning up their act. Maybe.

6. Tattooed Moose

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1137 Morrison Dr
Charleston, SC 29403
(843) 277-2990
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Tattooed Moose may have duck fat fries, but the spirit of the place is pure dive. The patio overlooks nothing picturesque and that's just part of the enduring charm.

7. The Pour House

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1977 Maybank Hwy
Charleston, SC 29412
(843) 571-4343
It gets hot and crowded, but the vibe at this rock 'n' roll dive venue is always good...and a little trippy.

8. Richard's Bar & Grill

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2237 Hwy 17 N
Mount Pleasant, SC
(843) 881-4861
A bar straight from another era, Richard's still allows smoking and has a jukebox. Best of all, none of it's in an ironic way.

9. Recovery Room

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685 King Street
Charleston, SC 29403
(843) 727-0999
Give it just a passing glance from King Street, and the Rec Room can look sketchy. But then you quickly realize everyone you know is there, sipping on some of the best happy hour specials and all-day deals in town.

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1. A.C.'s Bar & Grill

467 King St., Charleston, SC 29403-6231
A.C.'s is the kind of place that'll make you feel your age. Those who've hit a certain number will likely start whining about how loud and crowded it is, especially on weekends. But, as one Yelper said, "This place pretty much lets you do whatever the heck you want." Toss that in with their cheap drinks and eats, and it's got a certain timeless appeal.
467 King St.
Charleston, SC 29403-6231

2. The Griffon Pub

18 Vendue Range, Charleston, SC 29401
The bills and brews are plentiful at this English-style pub. Smack-dab in the middle of the touristy part of town, The Griffon has a soul and, in the words of their website is "STILL KICKIN' ASS."
18 Vendue Range
Charleston, SC 29401

3. Upper Deck Tavern

353 King St, Charleston, SC 29401
Ah, to be in college again. This dive caters to the under-25 set, but given it's somewhat hidden location, it's possible to stumble across Upper Deck and stay for the cheap drinks.
353 King St
Charleston, SC 29401

4. Moe's Crosstown Tavern

714 Rutledge Avenue, Charleston, SC 29403
It's hard to gauge the exact percentage of Wagener Terrace residents that pour in for Burger Night, but it often feels like the entire neighborhood is crammed in there. It's low-key, full of locals and homier than the exterior gives away.
714 Rutledge Avenue
Charleston, SC 29403

5. Big John's Tavern

251 East Bay St., Charleston, SC 29401
With lots of specials on the chalkboard and bras on the ceiling, Big John's seems to breed debauchery. Even their phone number spells out DIVE. But with The Green Door moving into the back, they might be cleaning up their act. Maybe.
251 East Bay St.
Charleston, SC 29401

6. Tattooed Moose

1137 Morrison Dr, Charleston, SC 29403
Tattooed Moose may have duck fat fries, but the spirit of the place is pure dive. The patio overlooks nothing picturesque and that's just part of the enduring charm.
1137 Morrison Dr
Charleston, SC 29403

7. The Pour House

1977 Maybank Hwy, Charleston, SC 29412
It gets hot and crowded, but the vibe at this rock 'n' roll dive venue is always good...and a little trippy.
1977 Maybank Hwy
Charleston, SC 29412

8. Richard's Bar & Grill

2237 Hwy 17 N, Mount Pleasant, SC
A bar straight from another era, Richard's still allows smoking and has a jukebox. Best of all, none of it's in an ironic way.
2237 Hwy 17 N
Mount Pleasant, SC

9. Recovery Room

685 King Street, Charleston, SC 29403
Give it just a passing glance from King Street, and the Rec Room can look sketchy. But then you quickly realize everyone you know is there, sipping on some of the best happy hour specials and all-day deals in town.
685 King Street
Charleston, SC 29403

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