Cheap, popular and just a little seedy
Go to Killfish expecting to wake up with a very bad hangover. While there is virtually no atmosphere, there is cheap beer, whisky and any other liquor you can think of on tap. Ask any student in Moscow and they'll either have, or know of the Killfish discount card which offers further reductions. While we wouldn't recommend it for a date, it's a good spot to deaden your emotions after a breakup or watch a game and nurse a beer. The chain has a dozen branches across the city.
Dive bar with heart
There are flashy bars around Kuznetsky Most, but MyBar is the kind of place that gives you a warm welcome. Order yourself some nachos and a beer, then chat to the crowd of expats and locals who have popped in for a drink after work. It's packed on weekends, so best to get there early. The bar shuts once the last customer departs, so you can party until dawn.
+ 7 (916) 583 5279
3 Kuznetsky Most, Bldg. 2. Metro Kuznetsky Most
Stolovaya that comes alive in the evenings
Kamchatka is a bit of a curveball from up-scale restaurateur Arkady Novikov. By day a Soviet-style stolovaya with tasty eats, by night a sweaty, crowded bar with loud music and outrageously cheap beer. You'll need sharp elbows to be served, and on the weekends it's not unheard of for people to dance on tables, adding to the fun. In summer you'll recognize it by the outdoor barbecue and hoards of young people spilling out onto the pedestrianized street.
+ 7 (495) 624 8825
7 Ulitsa Kuznetsky Most. Metro Kuznetsky Most
Basement bar in the center
Tourists have a hard time finding a centrally located bar that won't break the bank. A basement bar off Pushkin Square, Pod Mukhoi (Russian slang for tipsy) may be rough around the edges, but is a quintessential dive bar with a strong crowd of regulars and tourists. Noodle dishes are made to order and cocktails are cheap. This place gets pretty crowded from Thursday onwards. Decor is austere, as are the bouncers on occasion, so if you're blessed with a youthful countenance be sure to bring ID.
+ 7 (495) 650 2779
6 Strastnoi Bulvar, Bldg. 2. Metro Chekhovskaya