The best dive bars in South Florida | Map of your picks

With the oldest bar in Hollywood set to close its doors, we asked readers to send us their favorite neighborhood dive bars. The response, over email and on Facebook, was overwhelming, though we seem to all be in slight disagreement over what constitutes a “dive.”

In sharing the call for divey submissions on his popular Facebook group, Let’s Eat, South Florida, Sun Sentinel food critic Mike Mayo wrote, “Dive bars, in their purest form, are usually cash only, allow smoking, may or may not serve food and should be open 20 hours a day (like 7 a.m.-3 a.m.). Nowadays some may have full kitchens or take credit cards, but under no circumstances should they feature bartenders in vests or with manbuns, nor should they be using beakers, eyedroppers, tweezers or scissors to snip fresh herbs.”

I’d second all of that, but a dive also seems to me to be a primarily local joint. The people who frequent, say, Wetz Pub in Sunrise are not likely to be found in Nipper’s Bar in Boca Raton. These are, in other words, the places where the townies drink. And yet, here in South Florida, our most popular dive bars are tourist destinations. Fort Lauderdale’s Elbo Room was the most commonly cited example of a dive bar in South Florida. Mac’s Club Deuce, the oldest bar in Miami Beach, or even the greater Miami area now that Tobacco Road is gone, got several mentions as well.

Regardless of our own personal prejudices regarding what is or is not a dive bar, we took all of your submissions and plotted them on a map of South Florida.