East Coast dive bars inevitably mix great food, unique neighborhood vibes and the occasional nautical theme to great effect. Providence’s selection of dive bars embodies all of those traits to great effect, adding to the mix a strong live music scene that runs through many of the city’s best bars.
But as far as nautical themed dive bars go, Captain Seaweed’s Pub
in the city’s Fox Point neighborhood may be the country’s best, a simple brick building that hides an explosion of taxidermy fish and seafaring signage inside and on the dive bar’s extensive back patio. When the Providence weather cooperates, outdoor seating at Captain Seaweed’s Pub is difficult to beat.
The Providence live music spectrum is broad, demonstrated by fellow dive bars Nick-A-Nees
and The Scurvy Dog
, operating in different parts of the city but with a common devotion to divey live performances. The Scurvy Dog looks a bit like a black shoebox and borders the highway, a hub for punk music that spills out into annual blowouts in the bar’s parking lots. Similarly, The Scurvy Dog’s dive bar oasis downtown also features live music outside but matches it with a weekly bluegrass night that draws big crowds each Wednesday.
Put together, Providence is an excellent example of what East Coast dive bars do well, using specific traits of the region and creating indoor-outdoor spaces that withstand New England winters while maximizing each summer month. Adding a dive bar vibe on top of those great traits creates something special and Providence excels at doing just that.