Take your pick from some of our favourite bars, pubs and clubs in Winchester. There are great gastro options to choose from if you get peckish. It all depends on whether you want a simple pint, some outrageous cocktails, or disco balls and drinks deals at Winchester’s best nightclub.
Nightlife in Winchester
The Black Boy is a brilliant pub hidden away on Wharf Hill. The decor toes the line between antiquated, cool, and eclectic all at the same time. There’s a brilliant selection of (local) real ales on tap, and a smattering of good French wines. And when you get peckish, there’s a simple menu of tasty homemade food, ranging from sausage baguettes to full blown Sunday roasts. There’s no other pub like it in Winchester.
The Hyde Tavern is another hidden gem of note. It’s across town on Hyde Street, about a twenty-minute walk from our Winchester hotel. It’s a community pub with a penchant for putting on great live music. Expect impromptu folk-sessions, top-class cask ales, live music booked from around the world, art exhibitions, workshops, and the warmest welcome in Winchester. There’s no food options, but you’re welcome to order a takeaway and they’ll supply plates and cutlery for a nominal fee.
The Wykeham Arms on Kingsgate Street is a great rustic pub dating back to 1755. It’s one of the best gastropubs in Hampshire with the best Sunday roast in the business. The decor is rustic and welcoming, and it’s a Fuller’s pub so you can bet your bottom dollar on a brilliant pint of London Pride.
A similarly excellent choice for food and drink is the St James Tavern. It’s a cosy wood-lined pub, stylishly decorated, with a lovely little patio. There’s plenty of cask ales on offer. Everything on the menu tastes delicious. Monday is burger night, Tuesday offers an evening pub quiz, Wednesday is a celebration of pies, and there’s regular live music too. Lastly, sunny days call for a trip to The Queen Inn and its big rear beer garden, behemoth burgers, and brilliant selection of drinks.
Bars in Winchester
Greens Bar is a great place to go for a drink and a bite to eat. It’s been around on Jewry Street for nearly 30 years and prides itself on being a family-run institution. There’s a good wine list, and some nice cocktail options too. The setting is old-timey but stylish. The food is homemade and delicious. Visit early in the week to make the most of their daily drinks deals, including Martini Monday, G&T Tuesdays, and Prosecco Wednesdays.
At the other end of Jewry Street, another stylish cafe bar option is the Cabinet Rooms. It’s from the same chaps who gave the locals their beloved Winchester Cocktail Week and Ginchester Fete. Inevitably they found themselves in a permanent home in the town centre pouring some of the best cocktails in town. It’s far from the biggest of bars so don’t be disheartened if you’re turned away at the door.
Overdraft was already one of our favourite places to go for a drink in Southampton, so we jumped for joy at the news they were bringing their combination of beers and tacos to the people of Winchester. Their selection of craft ales is stellar and their tacos are so good they bring a tear to the eye. They book DJs most nights of the week, the place is a vibe, and the prices are very reasonable.
Saving the best till last, Incognito is a quite exceptional cocktail bar. It’s a supremely creative establishment. It’s been styled as a Victorian parlour, with a crazy menu of cocktails that are mixed and served with no small amount of theatricality. Expect fire, smoke, props, unexpected ingredients, big flavours and an excellent atmosphere. They serve a similarly pretty selection of food, the staff are friendly and attentive, and there’s live music every night.
If you fancy a proper night out in Winchester, when you’ve had your fill of the town’s bars and pubs, make your way to Vodka, the most popular club in town. It’s spans three floors with great drinks deals and DJs dropping bangers until the early hours of the morning. Tuesday is student night with £2 drinks, Friday is Flex when Winchester lets its hair down, and Saturday is Debonair when you can dance until the doors close at 3am.