Food - Drink
Why The Dive Bar Is So Difficult To Define
You’ve undoubtedly heard the term "dive bar," but it's hard to define what gives a drinking establishment this moniker. Some give the term a negative connotation, with various definitions including adjectives like "disreputable" and "shabby," but the true spirit of the dive bar is more complex and deserves more respect.
For pedagogical purposes, the unofficial definition of a "dive bar" is "any cheap bar with a local flavor." Dive bars are "mostly about feel," says Eater, and they can be dark or bright, loud or quiet, big or small, old or new; one of the connecting threads may be the fact that there is nothing pretentious about a dive spot.
Dive bars open early, stay open late, prefer cash, offer limited food options, and probably have a jukebox, states Vine Pair. Another defining characteristic of dives is that they're unchanging and always familiar, which can separate them from other types of bars that may be ruggedly simple, but actually try to keep up with trends.
Perhaps the most notable and unique characteristic of the dive bar is its sense of community: they're characterized by regular customers and foster a communal atmosphere with a working-class sensibility. A dive is a highly social spot, and unlike at a restaurant, it isn't weird to start talking to the person sitting beside you.