Turning 21 in San Luis Obispo unlocks a whole new universe for students: bars and nightlife as a whole. Focusing on the main bars on Higuera Street where the majority of people gather on weekend nights, one can quickly discover how much these downtown locations have to offer and learn the ins and outs of San Luis Obispo’s bar scene.
Located at 685 Higuera St., Kreuzberg California is a coffee shop by day and a bar by night. The nighttime atmosphere is more sophisticated than the other bars on the street, but they offer several fun events during the week.
The general manager, James Valdez, spoke about their two biggest nights of the week.
“We are hosting an open bootleg comedy that we do Wednesday nights 7-9 p.m. [There’s] a bunch of great stand-up comedy, it’s a great time. Booze is flowing, laughs are going and it’s always a good time here on Wednesday nights,” Valdez said.
While being 21 is a requirement to participate and enjoy the Wednesday comedy nights, everyone is allowed to participate in Thursday night trivia. Thursday night trivia takes place from 7:30-9:30 p.m. each week so people can stop by during the Farmers market.
“[It’s] always a good time. The season winner gets a huge cash prize. Put your brain to the test,” Valdez said.
Buffalo Pub and Grill, located at 717 Higuera St., is a smaller bar that attracts young people with its upbeat dancing music and cheaper drinks.
Monday is trivia night from 7-9 p.m., while Tuesday is Pint Night where people can get a beer for $4.
Wednesday from 6-9 p.m. is both Grilled Cheese Night and Open Mic Night, and Thursday is College Night where they offer $4 well drinks and live DJ sets from 9 p.m.- 2 a.m.
On Fridays they also have DJs come from 10 p.m.-2 a.m., and they are looking to make every Friday a themed night.
On Sunday, Buffalo has Karaoke to finish off the weekend from 9 p.m.- 2 a.m.
Frog and peach
Frog and Peach is a staple in downtown San Luis Obispo with its entrance leading straight into a stage and dance floor, accompanied by an outdoor lounge area in the back. This British-style, laidback pub is located at 728 Higuera St.
They have live music nearly every night with a few DJs mixed in throughout the week. On the first Wednesday of every month they have Hip Hop Night, where the music is strictly to theme.
Tuesday nights are Pint Nights where they have discounted pints of beers for all.
The Mark is a popular bar featuring a large outdoor space fit for relaxing and socializing. Located at 673 Higuera St., it brings in hundreds of people on weekend nights.
Wednesday nights are karaoke nights, where people are able to drunkenly sing their hearts out.
With the season in full swing, The Mark temporarily has Monday Night Football and Sunday Ticket Football where they dedicate the nights to watching the current football games.
They also have DJs on Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights at their dance floor by the entrance of the bar.
Occasionally, they have live bands come in to play for their guests. There is no set schedule for this, but they write the list of upcoming shows on a board above the bar in the front.
F. McLintocks Saloon has a true wild-west feel to it, bringing people in on weekend nights to their location on 686 Higuera St.
Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights are their Late Nights, where they are open until 2 a.m. to keep the fun going! They hope to extend their Late Nights to Tuesday and Wednesday nights in the near future.
Micaela Garcia, manager of the saloon, takes pride in the bar’s “cheapest drinks in town.” They also offer weekly deals that differ every week, such as last week’s deal of getting a $1 shot alongside buying another drink during their Late Night days.
From 4-6 p.m. on Wednesday-Sunday, McLintocks has happy hour where they offer $5 well drinks, $5 draft pints and $2 off their new appetizer list.
Mother’s Tavern, also known as MoTav among college students, is packed with people on Thursday nights. Located at 725 Higuera St., it is at the heart of the downtown bars.
On Sunday nights, they offer karaoke from 9 p.m.- 2 a.m.
They temporarily have Thursday Night Football while the football season lasts so that people can watch the games during and after the Farmers market.
Their weekly happy hour is from 4-6 p.m. where everyone can grab a discounted drink and hang out.
Overlooking the San Luis Obispo Creek, Sidecar provides a more elegant night out filled with cocktails and appetizers. Located at 1040 Broad St., it is right near where all the action happens.
Sidecar hosts Tiki night each Thursday from 7-10 p.m. in their downstairs area, where they feature Tiki cocktails with homemade ingredients and specialty rums.
Wednesday is an all-night happy hour night, where several of their cocktails and appetizers are discounted through the night. Additionally, they offer a happy hour special each day from 4-6 p.m.
Jazz Sundays are a new addition to their weekly events. From 8-11 p.m., local jazz band The Jazz Trio Forte plays in their downstairs area where they offer drink specials and dumplings, too.