In Austin for SXSW? Here’s Your Locals’ Guide to the Best Nightlife


The White Horse

The countdown to SXSW is on! As droves of revelers invade the city to take part in the nine day extravaganza, we enlisted Billy Nachman and Hobson Brown, co-founders at Austin-based Criquet Shirts (1603 S. 1st Street, Austin, TX 78704) to help us map out the must-visit after-hours spots that will help you take to the scene like a true Austinite. 

SXSW is Austin’s premier gathering of music, film, technology and fashion. More than any other of Austin’s great festivals, SXSW allows visitors to experience the city as a whole. So while you are out and about, keep an eye out for events happening at these places. They will not disappoint.

The White Horse
500 Comal Street, Austin, TX 78702
I like to describe the White Horse (pictured above) as a hipster honky tonk. Don’t let the “hipster” steer you away—it’s a diverse crowd that wants nothing more than to drink, listen, and dance. The music is always good, the drinks are always stiff, and it’s the perfect place to test your two-step skills.



1816 E 6th Street, Austin, TX 78702
Whisler’s is truly one of the more unique spots in town. Don’t forget to stop into the second floor, Mezcalaría Tobalá, for smokey sips of Tequila’s godfather, Mezcal.

Clive Bar


609 Davis Street, Austin, TX 78701
The second house bar to live on Rainey, Clive has seen the once sleepy street turn into Austin’s fastest growing entertainment district. The brother bar to the pioneer, Lustre Pearl, Clive is the perfect place to grab a craft cocktail and chat up the great bar staff.



Weather Up
1808 East Cesar Chavez, Austin, TX 78702
The original Weather Up lives in Brooklyn. Like the many people that have made the NYC-to-Austin move, Weather Up decided to take its game to East Austin. Beautiful cocktails, great service, and an even cooler house bar and yard, it’s a definite must-visit.

Continental Club

Continental Club

The Continental Club
1315 South Congress Avenue, Austin, TX 78704
The daddy of all live music venues in Austin, The Continental Club has seen its share of music history. With the best line-up of weekly standing gigs, from Dale Watson, to James McMurty, to Redd Volkaert and Heybale!, The Continental Club offers the perfect place to get acquainted with the South Congress scene while drinking a Lone Star beer.

Broken Spoke

Broken Spoke

The Broken Spoke
3201 S Lamar Boulevard, Austin, TX 78704
Austin’s oldest and greatest dance hall, The Broken Spoke oozes with history and nostalgia. If you want to get your urban cowboy on, there is no better place in town. And if you don’t know the difference between a box-step and a two-step, they offer lessons for those in need.


  1. The Ensemble – Criquet SXSW Austin Bar Guide – Jeans & Ties

    […] There’s no worse feeling than being plopped into a new city with no local knowledge to guide your dining/drinking/activity choices around town. With everyone and their brother headed to Austin for South By Southwest, let the Criquet guys help you navigate the Texas capital’s crowded bar scene || Southern Living: In Austin for SXSW? Your Locals’ Guide to the Best Nightlife […]

    March 13, 2015 at 1:04 pm
  2. The Kentucky Gent

    SO jealous – really wish I was in Austin for SXSW this weekend.

    Josh – The Kentucky Gent

    March 11, 2015 at 7:35 pm

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