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KANSAS CITY, Mo. — It’s not hard to find a cocktail in Kansas City. From downtown to Waldo and even the burbs, the metro is overflowing with spirits.

With all the excellent choices, how do you know what to pick? What can you do to get the best bang for your booze?

Kansas City Magazine’s July edition digs into just that; it’s your ultimate Kansas City Bar Guide. Reporters did not ask for special treatment or accept advertising money. They simply went for a good drink and a good time. Here’s what they found.

Bar of the year: Condor’s Cove

The Bar of the Year section in KC Mag is a big deal, even though the winner is simply one woman: Diana Condori.

She doesn’t only get special kudos for her incredible, hand-crafted cocktails. Condori pops up once a month in different bars, turning the space into a tiki treasure.

“She truly transforms these spaces into a tropical oasis,” Associate Editor Nicole Kinning said.

Those wanting to experience the magic can check on her Instagram or sign up for a newsletter on her site. However, Condori usually sells out fast, so you have to be quick.

Kansas City’s world-class cocktail scene

Part of the bar guide dives into the overall KC cocktail scene, which has become a head above the rest.

“We couldn’t make a bar guide without acknowledging that Kansas City’s cocktail scene is truly elite,” Kinning said. “There are places in Kansas City that would shine in Brooklyn or Hollywood.

Kinning said reporters credited incredible bartenders and unique vibes, highlighting one-of-a-kind spaces like Mercury Room, Drastic Measures, and Canary.

Private drinking clubs

What are those? Kinning said restrictive laws in the mid-century caused problems for people wanting to deliver drinks to thirsty patrons.

“There were a bunch of these private drinking clubs that opened up in Wyandotte County and Johnson County to kind of get around that,” Kinning said.

People pay a membership fee to drink, often for a discounted price. It’s all about the experience and comradery, she said.

Bar trivia in the back

The back of the magazine has a section for trivia. Test your knowledge of KC area bars, and hey, maybe you’ll learn a thing or two.

Hear more about the bar guide in the video at the top of this story, and check out Kansas City Magazine.

  • Picture of Mercury Room
  • Picture of Diana Condori via Condor's Cove
  • Picture of Key Hole Lounge
  • Picture of Black Dolphin
  • Picture of July Kansas City Magazine