Sips & Secrets: The Speakeasy Scene In Charlotte, NC

Speakeasy in Charlotte, NC

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Exploring the speakeasy scene in Charlotte, NC, is quite an adventure. I know because my husband and I spent a weekend discovering them.

(It was hard, but someone had to do it.) 😁

I’m here to fill you in on the important details about visiting Charlotte’s speakeasies. I’ll make sure you know how to get in, including secret passwords, and whether or not you need a membership.

Speakeasies In Charlotte, NC

1 – The Cellar At Duckworth’s

The Cellar is a speakeasy located underneath Duckworth’s Grill & Taphouse in Uptown Charlotte. It was our favorite speakeasy that we visited, and we can’t wait to return with our kids.

The Cellars At Duckworth. Our favorite speakeasy in Charlotte, NC
The Cellar At Ducksworth’s in Uptown Charlotte is a must-visit!

As you step downstairs, you’re swept back to the Roaring Twenties with warm lighting, cozy decor, and staff dressed in period attire.

This speakeasy offers fantastic cocktails. We enjoyed the Smoked Buttered Pecan Old Fashioned and the Cellar Paloma.

The presentation of the Old Fashioned was unforgettable. They add the smoke to the cocktail right at your table.

Cocktails and food at The Cellar At Duckworth's, a speakeasy in Charlotte, North Carolina
Cocktails and dining at The Cellar are outstanding!

Go hungry because you’ll want to enjoy the outstanding food menu. I recommend the Pork Steam Buns and the Burrata Cheese Salad. The presentation and taste of each dish were phenomenal.

The history of The Cellar is as rich as its cocktails. In the 80s and 90s, this underground bar was known as Jonathan’s Jazz Cellar. Legendary musicians such as Prince, Eric Clapton, and B.B. King performed here.

Within The Cellar lies an additional treat for beverage enthusiasts. The Cellar boasts a dedicated room with 300 local and imported beers and an extensive range of wine.

This room is kept at a constant 55 degrees to ensure optimal tasting conditions. We felt fortunate they let us tour this room.

Kristen and Gary in and beer room at The Cellar at Duckworth's in Charlotte, NC
The beer cellar is kept at a constant 55 degrees.
The Cellar at Duckworth's is an underground speakeasy in Charlotte, NC
This underground speakeasy has all the ambiance of a 1920s prohibition bar.

You won’t need a password or membership to visit, but I strongly suggest booking a reservation before you go. There were empty tables when we went early on Friday, but it’s a cozy space that can get booked up easily.

Quick Facts

  • Website: The Cellars at Duckworth
  • Location: Uptown Charlotte
  • Password required: No
  • Membership required: No
  • Dress Code: No
  • Reservations: Recommended but not required
  • Food menu: Yes

🚙Trippy Tip – Ask them where the stage was that Prince and other legends performed on. Or for a tour of their carefully curated wine and beer cellar.

2 – BackStage Lounge at SouthBound

Finding BackStage Lounge is quite the adventure!

BackStage Lounge speakeasy in Charlotte, NC
BackStage Lounge is located in the back of SouthBound Restaurant.

You’ll first navigate to the restaurant SouthBound which is located about 10 minutes south of Uptown Charlotte.

SouthBound is an open-air eatery with a Baja vibe. It was very crowded when we visited, and we were worried that the speakeasy would be also. But we were happy to find that the speakeasy was hidden, quiet, and intimate.

Once you park at SouthBound, navigate to the back of the restaurant and venture down the hallway to the left of the hair salon. An old-style telephone awaits you.

Pick it up, provide the secret entry word of the week – which you can find on their Instagram – and you’re granted access to this clandestine retreat.

Step inside to find a world of superb cocktails handcrafted by skilled bartenders who honor the Prohibition era’s spirit while incorporating modern mixology techniques.

A cocktail from BackStage Lounge, a speakeasy in Charlotte, NC.
The Conquistador cocktail from BackStage Lounge.
Gary drinking a cocktail from BackStage Lounge speakeasy in Charlotte, North Carolina.
Gary enjoying a cocktail from the BackStage Lounge.

Their drink menu is complemented by an assortment of small plates and delectable dessert options, perfect for satisfying your palate while enjoying the vibrant ambiance.

The speakeasy often hosts local bands, creating an intimate concert experience that echoes the lounge’s overall character – a celebration of the local, the hidden, and the unique.

No membership is required and you can book this speakeasy for a private party.


Quick Facts

  • Website: BackStage Lounge at SouthBound
  • Location: 10 minutes south of Uptown Charlotte
  • Password required: Yes, find it on their instagram
  • Membership required: No
  • Dress Code: No
  • Reservations: No
  • Food menu: Yes

3 – The Cotton Room at Belfast Mill

The Cotton Room is located above Belfast Mill in popular Brevard Court in Uptown Charlotte, NC.

Brevard Court once was an open-air cotton marketplace that now houses several restaurants and bars. It’s very popular with locals and tourists alike.

The Cotton Room has a southern-inspired speakeasy atmosphere. You’ll notice the comfortable seating and friendly bartenders when you walk in.

The Cotton Room speakeasy at Belfast Mill in Charlotte, NC
The Cotton Room at Belfast Mill has a cozy southern speakeasy vibe.

The Cottom Room is known for its fantastic cocktails, but they also serve beer and wine.

One of the defining features of this speakeasy is its whiskey club, where members will enjoy the monthly tastings of the finest whiskeys in Charlotte.

Click here to learn more about The Brevard Whiskey Club of Charlotte.

The Cotton Room speakeasy at Belfast Mill in Charlotte, NC
The Cotton Room is located above Belfast Mills in Uptown Charlotte.
Cocktail at The Cottom Room speakeasy at the Belfast Mill in Charlotte, NC
The Cotton Room is known for its fantastic cocktails and intimate atmosphere.

You won’t need a membership or password to visit The Cottom Room. And if you want to enjoy a meal before or after your visit, there are several restaurants nearby.

Quick Facts

  • Website: The Cottom Room at Belfast Mill
  • Location: Uptown Charlotte
  • Password required: No
  • Membership required: No
  • Dress Code: No
  • Reservations: Not required
  • Food menu: No

4 – Dot Dot Dot

Dot Dot Dot is a speakeasy located 15 minutes south of Uptown Charlotte. You’ll find it in the backlot of the Park Road Shopping Center.

Food and drinks at Dot Dot Dot speakeasy in Charlotte, NC
Dot Dot Dot offers food and drink pairings in an upscale speakeasy environment. Photo cred: Dot Dot Dot Facebook page.

For those who enjoy the sophistication of dressing up and being part of an exclusive club, Dot Dot Dot is for you.

If you’ve known Gary and me very long, you’ll know we aren’t fans of dressing up, so we didn’t visit this speakeasy, but it wasn’t for lack of good reviews.

Dot Dot Dot is one of the most popular speakeasies in Charlotte. It gets rave reviews for its cocktails and captivating atmosphere. Guests love the hidden location, cozy vibe, and expert mixologists.

Cocktail from Dot Dot Dot Speakeasy in Charlotte, NC
Photo cred: Dot Dot Dot Facebook page.
Cocktail from Dot Dot Dot speakeasy in Charlotte, North Carolina
Photo cred: Dot Dot Dot Facebook page.

They also offer small plates of food that pair with their drink menu.

Membership is only $10 a year. And don’t overthink the dress code. They’ll let you in with nice jeans and a business-casual shirt. Read about the dress code here.

Reservations are highly recommended, and they ask that you keep your dining experience to a 2-hour minimum.

Quick Facts

  • Website: Dot Dot Dot
  • Location: 15 minutes south of Uptown Charlotte
  • Password required: No
  • Membership required: Yes
  • Dress Code: Yes
  • Reservations: Highly Recommended
  • Food menu: Yes

5 – The Jailhouse Whiskey & Cigar Bar

The Jailhouse Whiskey & Cigar Bar is housed in a restored historic jailhouse in Belmont, NC. You can find it by going to the backside of the Old Stone Steakhouse, which used to be a police station.

The Jailhouse Whiskey & Cigar Bar is like a speakeasy in Belmont, NC.
This bar is located in a restored jailhouse from the 1960s. Photo cred: The Jailhouse Whiskey & Cigar Bar Facebook Page

The 30-minute drive from Charlotte is worth it, as this bar has an extensive premium whiskey selection. You can try their whiskey in one of their many whiskey cocktails or sample their whiskey flights.

They also offer several signature cocktails and even low-proof and no-proof cocktails.

A glass of whiskey from The Jailhouse Whiskey and Cigar Bar
Whiskey Cocktail. Photo cred: The Jailhouse Whiskey & Cigar Bar Facebook Page.
Craft Cocktail from The Jailhouse Whiskey & Cigar Speakeasy in Belmont, NC
Signature cocktail. Photo cred: The Jailhouse Whiskey & Cigar Bar Facebook Page.

Apart from the unique whiskey and cocktail offerings, they have a walk-in humidor for purchasing cigars. After selecting a cigar, you can retire to the speakeasy-styled lounge, where you’ll enjoy your cigar in a relaxed and comfortable environment.

No passwords or memberships are required. And they also feature a diner menu from small plates to full entrees to complement your beverages.

Quick Facts

  • Website: The Jailhouse Whiskey & Cigar Bar
  • Location: 30 minutes west of Uptown Charlotte
  • Password required: No
  • Membership required: Yes
  • Dress Code: No
  • Reservations: No
  • Food menu: Yes

6 – Supperland Speakeasy

Nestled in the heart of Charlotte, Supperland Restaurant is housed in a restored mid-century church. The restaurant offers a whimsical menu, vibrant southern garden, private wine room, and outdoor patio.

But the delightful surprise is in the basement – a charming, intimate speakeasy.

Cocktails at Supperland Speakeasy in Charlotte, NC
Cocktails and small plates thoughtfully paired at Supperland Speakeasy. Photo cred: Supperland Speakeasy Facebook.

To access the Supperland Speakeasy, patrons need to have pre-paid reservations. This exclusive policy is necessary given the speakeasy’s limited seating.

With only 10 seats available, the bar offers an intimate and unique experience.

The speakeasy has an inventive approach to dining and drinking. For the current price of $150 per person, guests are treated to a 4-course journey of unique signature cocktails, each thoughtfully paired with a small plate.

10 seat bar at Supperland Speakeasy in Charlotte, NC
Reservations are a must at this cozy 10-seat speakeasy. Photo cred: Supperland Speakeasy Facebook.
Cocktails at the Supperland Speakeasy in Charlotte, North Carolina
Creative cocktails are paired with small dinner plates. Photo cred: Supperland Speakeasy Facebook.

This curated experience allows patrons to discover new flavors and combinations, making every visit a gastronomic adventure.

Quick Facts

  • Website: Supperland Speakeasy
  • Location: 10 minutes east of Uptown Charlotte
  • Password required: No
  • Membership required: No
  • Dress Code: No
  • Reservations: Pre-paid reservations required
  • Food menu: Yes

🚙Trippy Tip – You can reserve all 10 seats for an intimate party with your friends.

7 – Single Barrel Room

The Single Barrel Room is located in Whiskey Warehouse in the heart of Charlotte, North Carolina. It has the intimate charm of a speakeasy and a modern bar’s vibrant energy.

You’ll love their whiskey-forward craft cocktails as well as their superb selection of local beers, offering patrons a taste of the region’s thriving craft beer scene.

Whiskey at the Single Barrel Room Speakeasy in Charlotte, NC
Enjoy whiskey-forward cocktails at the Single Barrel Room. Photo cred: Whiskey Warehouse Facebook.
A cocktail from the Single Barrel Room Speakeasy in Charlotte, NC
A cocktail from the Single Barrel Room. Photo cred: Whiskey Warehouse Facebook.

But the Single Barrel Room isn’t just about drinks. They offer an equally impressive food menu. And you can even enjoy food and drinks at their lively rooftop bar that offers gorgeous views of Charlotte’s skyline.

Quick Facts

  • Website: Single Barrel Room
  • Location: Uptown Charlotte
  • Password required: No
  • Membership required: No
  • Dress Code: No
  • Reservations: Not required
  • Food menu: Yes

Cocktails from speakeasy

Want a free printable guide to the speakeasies in Charlotte? Click below for our free guide to help you plan your next speakeasy adventure.

It will give you a quick view of all the speakeasies in Charlotte and which ones require a password, membership, or dress code.

Speakeasy Charlotte NC free printable

What Is A Speakeasy?

A speakeasy was an establishment that sold alcoholic beverages illegally during the Prohibition era in the United States from 1920 to 1933. The term originated from patrons being told to “speak easy,” or quietly, to avoid attracting attention from law enforcement.

To read more about the history of speakeasies, how to host your own speakeasy party, or even how to decorate your home to look like a speakeasy, go HERE!

What else is there to do in Charlotte, NC?

Tour The Haunted Spots Of Charlotte

Learn about the secret haunted spots in Charlotte through spine-chilling ghost tours.

Settlers' Cemetery in Charlotte, NC is haunted by ghosts.
Settler’s Cemetery – one of the haunted spots you’ll visit on the Carolina History and Haunts Tour.

Visit the quaint town of Concord, NC

Concord, NC, is just minutes away from Charlotte and offers a small-town feel with plenty to do, like the Concord Mills Mall (one of the largest attractions in North Carolina.

Or my favorite Krispy Kreme store that incorporates ice cream into the menu.

Krispy Kreme treat at Concord Mills NC
You can get doughnut-infused milkshakes at this Krispy Kreme store in Concord Mills, NC.

Other Popular Attractions In Charlotte

Where to stay in Charlotte, North Carolina

If you’re looking for a place to stay that’s close to the speakeasies in Charlotte, I highly recommend staying at the Dunhill Hotel. This hotel is gorgeous and a top historic spot in the queen city.

The Hilton is another wonderful hotel to stay at in the Uptown Charlotte area.

Dunhill Hotel

The Dunhill Hotel is located in Uptown Charlotte, where most visitors will want to stay.

It’s within walking distance of several attractions, including the above ghost tours.

Dunhill Hotel in Charlotte, NC
Book the haunted Dunhill Hotel for upscale accommodations. Photo cred: Expedia.

Hilton Uptown Charlotte

The Uptown Charlotte Hilton is near the NASCAR Hall of Fame as well as a metro station.

It has 2 restaurants and a health club.

Hilton in Uptown Charlotte, North Carolina
Book the Hilton Uptown Charlotte to be near the Metro and downtown attractions. Photo cred: Expedia.

If you need more space than a hotel room, check out this 2 bedroom, 2 bath luxury condo. It has a rooftop terrace to view the gorgeous Charlotte skyline.

This condo has a pool, outdoor fireplace, parking, and lovely decor.

Luxury condo in Uptown Charlotte, North Carolina
Book this luxury condo in Uptown Charlotte with rooftop skyline views. Photo cred: VRBO.

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Hi! I'm Kristen

I'm based in North Carolina, and love finding the hidden gems of the Carolinas and beyond! I explore quaint towns, adventurous outdoor activities, and fantastic food to help my readers plan their own unforgettable travels.

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17 Responses

  1. A speakeasy is a great adventure. We did not know that Charlotte, NC had them. Thank you for sharing.

  2. How fun to visit speakeasies in Charlotte! I’ve only been to the airport in that city. I need to plan a trip.

  3. I’ve always wanted to visit a speakeasy but haven’t yet had the opportunity. Charlotte, NC seems to be a mecca for speakeasies. I will definitely keep this city in mind. The Cellar at Duckworth’s caught my eye as the most interesting with all of the history attached to it.

    1. That certainly was our favorite speakeasy. We loved learning that Prince performed there.

  4. These speakeasies are so cool! I would love to check some out. I love experiencing places like these that have some history to go along with your beverages. I haven’t spent very much time in North Carolina yet, but the more I read about Charlotte, the more I want to visit.

  5. How fun! I love the speakeasy scene, and I don’t live too far from here either! I will have to check some of these places out. Thanks for the wonderful info!

    1. I’m just now learning about them and having so much fun finding them in North Carolina.

  6. There’s nothing I love more than a speakeasy – especially a quirky one! I was just saying to my husband yesterday how annoyed I am that we can’t just nip in to the city for a drink anymore like we used to. Since moving to the country, I’ve found it hard to adjust – and that was 5 years ago.

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