Colorado Springs has a long and tumultuous history related to the consumption of alcohol, and its current bar scene is reminiscent of its prohibition era past.
Down the rabbit hole, into an alley, through a haberdashery — these are just a few of the ways into Colorado Springs’ hidden bar scene.
It’s no coincidence that Colorado Springs is ripe with speakeasies and “hidden” bars. The city was once a forerunner in the prohibition of alcohol, with its founder, William J. Palmer, leading the charge. There were temperance rallies, bartenders sentenced to jail time, and liquor-lined trap doors filling the walls of Downtown estates.
Now almost 150 years later, Colorado Springs is a hub of craft brewing and distilling, along with a whole lot of bars, some of which seem to be knocking on the door of our city’s past. In honor of Colorado Springs’ thriving world of drinks, you can now go taste all of the best cocktails in one night through Rocky Mountain Food Tours’ Springs Signature Cocktail Tour!
To celebrate we’ve put together a list of our favorite speakeasies and hidden bars around the city:
110 East Boulder Street, Colorado Springs, CO 80903
Visit their website and you might be a bit confused. Both their website and storefront take on the appearance of a haberdashery, however, you’ll be hard-pressed to get your suit tailored here. Instead, you’ll find an intimate environment, where the bar seems to almost act as a stage for Brooklyn’s few bartenders, who exclusively mix drinks with the delicious Lee Spirit’s gin and whiskey. Whether you’re looking for a classic gin and tonic or a more adventurous beverage, Brooklyn’s won’t leave you disappointed. Check out Brooklyn’s on Boulder on our Springs Signature Cocktail Tour happening every Friday night.
101 North Tejon Street, Colorado Springs, CO 80903
Walk down Kiowa Street in Downtown Colorado Springs and you might mistake the entrance to this bar for an old underground subway stop. The Rabbit Hole is a longtime local favorite, describing itself as a “New American haunt crafting creative bites and cocktails in a sleek, subterranean space.” They offer a full menu until 1:30 a.m., seven days a week. Their menu is just as unique as their location — serving things like Bacon Wrapped Rabbit Meatloaf, Rabbit “Hare” Pie, and Chorizo Stuffed Bacon Wrapped Prawns. Be sure to check out their cozy environment and delicious menu offerings. The Rabbit Hole is featured on our classic Original Colorado Springs Food Tour.
2417 West Colorado Avenue, Colorado Springs, CO 80904
Upstairs Wine Bar is located right above La Baguette, the sweetest little French bakery in Old Colorado City. You’ll follow a narrow stairway leading into a small room that resembles a cozy European loft, outfitted with a comfy couch and a fireplace. While the wine bar feels almost like a family’s living room, the menu offers some of the classiest libations in the Springs — over 70 by-the-glass fine wines, various bottles of absinthe (yep, absinthe!), gourmet shareable plates, and cheese fondue. They boast that they’ll become “the secret living room you’ve always wanted.”
4. The Archives
15 South Tejon Street, Colorado Springs, CO 80903
The Archives is another hidden underground cocktail bar with no sign in Downtown. They’re open Tuesday-Saturday from 5:00 p.m.-2:00 a.m., making them one of the best spots in Colorado Springs for that late night grub grab. Along with their craft cocktails, you’ll find shareable bites like the Barrata & Garlic, Beef Sliders, and Loaded Tots (featuring Pork Bomb, Cheese Curds, and Jalapeños. Yum!). With a focus on history and the city’s past, the bar offers one of the more authentic speakeasy experiences — with its stealthy identity and prohibition era cocktail menu, you might start to believe you’ve been transported back to the time when Palmer made the rules in our city. Check out The Archives as a VIP during our Springs Signature Cocktail Tour.
1604 South Cascade Avenue, Colorado Springs, CO 80905
Walk through what looks like a typical elementary school hallway to the lower level of the old Ivywild School, and you’ll find Axe and the Oak, a moody, candlelit bar serving some of the best whiskey in town. Order a signature flight of whiskey or one of their craft cocktails (like the Tobacco Old-Fashioned), and sip to the tune of a local musician and the chatter of the busy bar. (Inside tip: Do you love whiskey and chocolate? Our friends at Cacao Chemistry have crafted a delicious cherry cordial using Axe and the Oak whiskey. They can be purchased from their store in Downtown Colorado Springs.)
182 East Cheyenne Mountain Boulevard, Colorado Springs, CO 80906
Spring’s Mag rated Motif as the top spot for a romantic date in Colorado Springs, and we can understand why. This jazz bar is unassuming from the outside, nestled in a small shopping center on the south side of town, however, the moment you enter, you’ll be transported to another time and place. Motif is only open Thursday, Friday, and Saturday from 5:00 p.m.-12:00 a.m., and with jazz performances each night, the place fills up quickly. If you spend any time there, you’ll likely be graced with the mixology magic of Aaron Martinez or Robert Michelowski, who each contribute five new cocktails a month, creating an ever changing menu that will keep you coming back for more.
15 East Bijou Street, Colorado Springs, CO 80903
It’s not often you have to walk down a dark alley to find the entrance to a bar. If you’re going to, however, it should be to visit Shame & Regret, one of the latest additions to Downtown Colorado Springs’ bar scene, taking the place of 15C. It sits just across the alley from the popular art galleries, S.P.Q.R. and Modbo. The bar is meant to mimic a Catholic confessional, fit with tinted windows, leather seats, and dark-stained wood. Its menu is filled with cocktails and bites, all with names that feel like a taunting nod to our city’s pious founder and its prohibition past.
8. Allusion Bar
323 North Tejon Street, Colorado Springs, CO 80903
We bet you’ve never been to a Game of Thrones themed bar! Allusion Bar sits in the back of Rooster’s House of Ramen (one of the stops on our Original Colorado Springs Food Tour!), inconspicuously hidden behind a faux brick wall. The speakeasy just opened in April and will be changing its theme every few months — each concept inspired by a different trend in pop culture. The changing theme is meant to keep things exciting and fresh, potentially drawing an entirely new crowd of patrons with each concept.
Need help finding all of the great cocktails Colorado Springs has to offer? We’ve got you! Book our Spring’s Signature Cocktail Tour for your next night out!
Here’s to Colorado Springs’ past and our very cocktail-filled future!
Cheers, Your Rocky Mountain Food Tours Team