Back in early April, our guy Poz wrote a blog power ranking the bars in Sea Isle, the neighboring beach town to Avalon. These two bar scenes are completely different. Sea Isle has a wider variety, and # of bars, but Avalon still packs a punch with great shore bars. This isn’t just my list however though. No, no , no. I scoured my contacts to find the men, and women, who know these bars like a priest knows the Bible. I’m not gonna reveal my sources, but they are respected opinions of locals and vacationers alike who are real Avalonians. So if you’re in AV already get your best fit on, and if you’re crossing the bridge from Sea Isle, leave your socks & sneakers behind for the beach tomorrow with your pool noodles, cause we’re in Avalon for the night.
5. Rock N’ Chair
Hand up, I’ve never stepped foot in this place. However, it’s an Avalon staple on Dune Drive. Always have to pay your respects, even if they are just subtle nods to yourself or your posse as you cruise to the beach. This is a local’s place I feel like, and I don’t mean just the summer owners. I’m talking the all year rounders hit up this place to avoid the shoobies, while still being able to enjoy town. Still not sure how this place hasn’t closed down yet considering I’ve never seen a soul walk in, or out, of the bar, but I’ll tip my cap to Bobby Dee for someone keeping his Rock N’ Chair afloat.
I know this is technically in Stone Harbor, but it’s right on that Avalon border and is a staple throughout Avalon life. Maybe your parents would take you to the Windrift for a nice meal, or just to pig out on Wing Night (best wings at the Jersey Shore), but the W is more than wings and a nice meal. Happy hour is electric. Not the electricity of sweating and screaming like Sea Isle, but a classier wave of electricity. At the Windrift you’re probably boozin’ with an insurance executive or a big baller from the Philly mainline next to you. The Windrift is where you bring a group to sit down at the Round Table and get after it with good food and drinks. It’s right on the beach too which just adds to the mystique and vibe of the Windrift.
3. ICONA Beach Bar
By no means am I encouraging underage drinking, but if you’re under 21, this is the best bet to get your first taste of beach bar life. I really wanted to throw the Windrift in this #3 spot, but ICONA being on the beach pushed it over the top for me. Something about the sand between the toes gets my drink buds going.
Two things: 1. Best Happy Hour on the island and 2. You know how they say you eat with your eyes first? Well just the look of the Whitebrier gives my eyes an orgasm.
This rivals many of the bars in Sea Isle despite the fact that it’s a little more high end and not as rowdy. It’s a 3-in-1 bar to me that serves multiple purposes because of its rooms. You want a great meal before you hit the town? Bang, hit up the Motorboat Club inside the WB (incredible beach bar name anywhere but Avalon). Now depending on the day/time you can also hit the Mermaid Cafe inside the WB to dance and booze like any other bar. The main reason Whitebrier makes the list is because of its happy hour at Octopus Garden. The setting is beautiful and the outdoor music sets it way above No Shower Happy Hour in SIC.
1. The Princeton
This is a no-brainer, and if for some reason Poz and I create a 7 Mile Island Bar Power Rankings, then the Princeton would be #1 on that list as well. For you Jersey Shore TV fans who don’t know about this place, the Princeton (aka the P) makes Karma and Aztec look like a kids birthday party at BounceU. To sum up the Princeton, imagine a place where successful business people like ESPN NBA analyst Tim Legler, who I met at the Princeton last summer, rub elbows with college kids and post grads looking to have a crazy summer night. It’s chaos, and poetry, in motion at the same time.
When I turned 21 in February last year I didn’t even care about legally buying alcohol, I only cared about waiting in that Princeton line, handing the bouncer my ID, and walking into the fire and the flames that is the P. The P is like 4-5 bars in one, if you want live rock music, you got it in the Rock Room. Maybe you want something a little quieter to really rip shots, bang, hit up Circle Tavern within the P. The multitude of bars in the P makes getting a drink easy. You go with your crew and within 5 minutes you’ve lost everyone, but it doesn’t matter cause you’ll run into so many blasts from the past. And for you younger guys, that means people will buy you drinks, but be careful not to have too many LIT’s or you’ll be laying face down on Dune Drive waiting for the Jitney to lug ya home.