Best College Bars near The University of Michigan

By   |  March 15, 2010

Image by: N0Nick (Flickr)

If you are a new student at The University of Michigan, you will fall in love with Ann Arbor. As a college town, Ann Arbor has many charming local dives and funky places to discover. The area surrounding the campus of The University of Michigan is alive with local bars favored by U-M Students. Whether you are in the mood for trivia, karaoke or a cheap beer after a week of classes, here are the most popular bars where you will find your fellow U-M classmates.

Brown Jug Restaurant
1204 S. University Ave.
Ann Arbor, MI 48104
(734) 761-3355

This campus favorite is a versatile place where you can take a date, take your parents out when they come in town or just wind down and have a beer.  The Brown Jug Restaurant is easy on your wallet too, as many college students agree that prices are reasonable, even downright cheap. If you are going to experience their libations, try one of the 10 different Long Island iced teas. (Tip: The green dinosaur is the most popular.) If you are looking for something good to eat, the veggie pizza is highly recommended along with the Feisty Feta & Greek pita bread.

Good Time Charley’s
1140 S. University Ave.
Ann Arbor, MI 48104
(734) 668-8411

Described as the epitome of an Ann Arbor college bar, Good Time Charley’s is the bar of choice for many students at the University of Michigan. If you are going for heavily loaded drinks, you will appreciate that the Long Island iced teas are served in a pickle jar. This bar also has just about every flavor of shots imaginable. Good Time Charley’s gets packed on the weekend, so if you are looking for a place to meet other students, you will have no problem finding them here. Conveniently positioned on the corner of South University Avenue and Church Street, Good Time Charley’s is within walking distance to the University’s dorms –which is a good thing if you’ve had one of the Long Island iced teas.

Rick’s American Cafe
611 Church St.
Ann Arbor, MI 48104
(734) 996-2747

Offering a typical American varsity vibe, Rick’s American Café is everything you may imagine a college bar to be. With their tag line “The Most Fun You Can Have with Your Clothes On,” Rick’s promises the flirtatious, sexy college party experience with flowing alcohol and live entertainment every night of the week. Honored by Playboy as “College Bar of the Month” and named “Best Campus Bar in Ann Arbor” by the “Michigan Daily,” Rick’s American Cafe is one of the busiest bars on the University of Michigan’s campus since it opened in 1979.

Blue Leprechaun
1220 S. University Ave. #109
Ann Arbor, MI 48113
(734) 665-7777

The Blue Leprechaun is one step up from a college dive bar. It is a bit classier than the typical college bar in Ann Arbor and is often frequented by more a more distinguished college crowd, including grad students and professors. Overzealous fraternity boys and sorority girls are generally not found drinking here. The fireplace in the front room gives this bar a cozy, pub feel. The Blue Leprechaun has live music, karaoke and a hip lounge downstairs that has a more laid-back atmosphere than the bar upstairs. If you are looking for a drink and dinner deal, Tuesday nights are “Everything is Half Off for Grad Students Nights,” which may explain why so many grad students like to hang out here.  If you are tired of pizza and hamburgers, this is a great place to go for some Irish comfort food, such as fish and chips or Sheppard’s pie.

Grizzly Peak Brewing
120 West Washington St.
Ann Arbor, MI 48104
(734) 741-7325

This is another brew pub that is popular among a college crowd with a more distinct palate. For those who enjoy the taste of beer and are not just looking for a cheap buzz, this pub will blow you away with its list of fine imports and locally brewed beer. They offer a great list of rotating and seasonal brew. Patrons enjoy a bustling bar with good spirits, food and a dim, warm environment. As a local favorite, this pub draws a diverse, lively crowd. While it may not be located on campus, many college students go here to treat themselves. If your parents are in town and offer to take you to dinner, take advantage of their offer and order something nice for yourself, such as the spicy, beer-steamed mussels or the pretzel-encrusted salmon with a Black & Tan brownie beer.

April Lentini writes for Apartment Guide in Detroit.

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