John Colins

30s / Bands / Bottle Service / Button-downs / Champagne / Cocktail Lovers / Cocktails / Dance Floor / Dancing / Diverse / DJ / Early 20s / Electronic / Flirty / Happy Hour / Hip-Hop / Hipster / Hipster / Latin / Live Band / Live Music / Old School / Polos / Preppy / Reggae / Regulars / Rum / Singles / Smart Casual / Snack Food / Soul / Sports Fans / Students / Tequila / TVs / Whiskey / Young Professionals / Bar / Club / Lounge
John Colins Located on the ground floor of a brick office building and accessed via a narrow alley just off Montgomery Street, John Colins is a popular little club with Happy Hour specials characteristic of a casual neighborhood bar. San Francisco United States 37.786833 -122.400328
4.04 9
John Colins - Bar | Club | Lounge in San Francisco.
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Party Earth Review Located on the ground floor of a brick office building and accessed via a narrow alley just off Montgomery Street, John Colins is a popular little club with Happy Hour specials characteristic of a casual neighborhood bar... ... read full review

  • Metro:

    BART: Montgomery
    MUNI J, KT, L, M, N Lines: Metro Montgomery Station

  • Phone:


  • Links:

  • Hours:

    M–F 5pm–2am, Sa 9pm–2am

  • Recommended as:

    • Night Spot

Party Earth John Colins Review

The Scene

Located on the ground floor of a brick office building and accessed via a narrow alley just off Montgomery Street, John Colins is a popular little club with Happy Hour specials characteristic of a casual neighborhood bar.

Located on the ground floor of a brick office building and accessed via a narrow alley just off Montgomery Street, John Colins is a popular little club with Happy Hour specials characteristic of a casual neighborhood bar.

Murals of coastal scenes and mounted surfboards combine with impressionistic cityscapes to create what the owners describe as a “Metropical” environment, while exposed brick and dark brown modern furniture class up the beachy vibe for the white-collared young professionals who pile in after work.

Miniature groves of tropical plants crowd the corners, surrounding an elevated lounge area that caters to the bottle service set, though depending on the night, the cozy dance floor attracts everyone from reggae revelers to hip-hop aficionados.

Indeed, the patrons are a diverse bunch, with some coming for the DJs or bands, others for the lively singles scene, and still others for the solid menu of classic cocktails.

Portraits of pit bulls form the backdrop for the party girls sipping JC Gimlets and Side Cars or shimmying on the dance floor, while mellow hipsters pull on snifters of top shelf whiskey and rum. Local sports fans know the bar broadcasts the Giants on the projection screen, but it could just as easily feature 80s music videos or surfing documentaries.

Regardless, the base of regulars is a devoted one, perhaps because the drinks are strong and the music is ever-changing, or maybe because John Colins is a bar that strives to be hip, but isn’t afraid to be a little weird.

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Tip from Emma:

Bring a student ID when you go for Happy Hour, as most nights the bar offers $1 off all drinks for students.

  • Crowd

    A multifarious mass of prepsters, hipsters, DJ followers, sports fans, young professionals, and college students, early 20s to 30s.

  • Entertainment / Music

    Live DJs nightly spinning mostly hip-hop, soul, Latin, reggae, dancehall, and electronica. Rotating live music on Tuesdays, Fridays, and/or Saturdays. Rotation varies monthly. Check venue website for latest calendar lineup.

  • Food / Miscellaneous

    Free bar snacks like pretzels and goldfish crackers. Happy Hour M–F 5–7pm. $20 credit card minimum at bar.

  • Prices

    Beer $4–$6, wine $6–$12, cocktails $7–$12, whiskey, scotch, tequila, and rum $7–$20, champagne $7–$9/glass or $25–$240/bottle, bottle service $200–$300, advanced table reservations recommended.

  • What to Wear / Dress Code

    Casual but stylish: plaid, button-downs, dark jackets, polos. No baggy jeans, shorts, or sportswear.

  • Hot Nights / When to Go

    Tuesdays for live music, or Fridays and Saturdays after 10pm for the biggest crowds.

  • Close By

    Temple Nightclub (540 Howard Street) is a larger club with Asian décor and a very different vibe – from hip-hop to trance – on each of its three dance floors.

John Colins User Reviews

Average rating:
Love it
Laryn P. Jun 7, 2013
Stop in. Not much to write as this is a great place to stop into for a few drinks. People are a great mix. Drinks are always good. A tad pricey, but not overly for SF standards. You may have to wait in line if you are a late partier - Been there around 1130 on a sat night and had to wait. Not a bad wait though. Good singles crowd (mainly mid 20s to mid 30s).
John Collins: Surfs Up, Gallery Style
Ashley V. Apr 6, 2013
John Collins is a gem of a bar, located in the Minna District of San Francisco. With its surfer vibe and gallery like environment, John Collins is the ideal place to go when seeking a place to wind down after a long day of work. The epitome of the Californian lifestyle, the bar can be enjoyed as a happy hour go to and as a choice venue for company party, birthday party, or other special affair. John Collins could be the Mecca you have been searching for. Interior wise, expect exposed bricked walls, high ceilings, hard wood floors, sky lights, chocolate brown interior, and surf boards showcased as art. With its gallery like ambiance, it's not your typical pub or cali themed dive bar. John Collins is a hot spot for modern business men and women in the SOMA and Financial District. With its laid back atmosphere, it is a popular place to wind down and enjoy a happy hour after a long day of work. Happy Hour occurs Monday- Thursday 5pm to 7pm and Friday 4pm to 7pm. Business attire and day suits are suggested. If you like to dance, I recommend the "Martini Lounge" which occurs every Wednesday. The "Den of Suits" are not afraid to get down and show off their dance moves. The menu channels the surfer theme. Drinks with names such as " Dark & Stormy", "The Brazilian", "Snow Job", and "Side Car De Nicaraguan" dot the menu along with bar classics such as Gimlets, Tequilas, Manhattans, Mai Tais, and Martinis. If you are going with a medium sized party, I recommend getting a table, as the bar can get a bit crowded as the night goes on. For table reservations you will want to contact a John Collins Rep. For private events and parties, don't be shy. John Collins can accommodate your group whether you are 25 people or 250. The venue boasts a DJ booth (which is an ideal platform to co-host an event from) , a state of the art 16 channel mixing console, 2 projectors for media, a stage for live music/presentations/performances and a wide range of premium liquors and beers. From a more "behind the scenes" perspective, I worked with John Collins as a Brand Ambassador and Model for a special Liquor Event. The Manager and Staff were friendly, personable, professional, and knowledgeable. Their passion for their work is evident in both their business and consumer interactions. Skilled in customer service and in business transactions, I highly recommend this bar for both businesses and consumers alike. Almost every interaction portrayed a refreshed and content attitude. I business I truly feel happy about supporting. I highly recommend to the modern business professional residing in San Francisco and to the visitor and out of towner alike. You are bound to enjoy the California ambiance and the delicious food and beverage. A must see for anyone seeking the California cultured experience.
A Den of Suits
Loren S. Mar 29, 2013
This place has done me wrong. Very wrong. That basil gin gimlet has ruined my work days. As I try to crank out my emails, I'm thinking about the sweet, vegative (yeah, I just made that up) drink that waits for me in just... six or seven more hours. A coworkers is speaking to me, but I only see her mouth move. I fill in the silence with my own words and respond, "Yeah, we probably should talk this over more at John Colins tonight." I might exaggerate, but serious, that gimlet is good. The place is a den of working professionals, so if you want a drink somewhere divey, move along. When you get your second wind after a couple drinks, just sit down on the couches and comfy chairs at the back of the place and be patient. The music will start to increase slowly until most of the patrons are on the dance floor, forgetting about that early meeting tomorrow morning. Join 'em for a while.
Happy Hour-Turned-Dance Hour
Kathy C. Feb 19, 2013
If you find yourself heading down New Montgomery Street after a long day at the office, veer into the narrow alleyway of Minna and mosey on into the conveniently located John Collins. During the happiest of happy hours, this dimly lit establishment is teeming with FiDi fun seekers ready to loosen their ties and throw back a cold one at the elongated bar. Hang your coat on the hook under the bar and free up your hands for a drink. Try one of John Collins' original concoctions or opt for a classic comfort. A friendly conversation with a fellow downtown drinker may ensue and if you stick around long enough, the dance floor near the entrance will crank out classic beats for you to test out your latest moves. John Collins offers a casual and cool experience but also caters to those looking to let their hair down deeper into the night. Whether you visit early or drop by late, John will show you a great time.
If you have yet to experience this dueling piano bar then you are missing out on a serious night of fun!
Alexandria H. Feb 11, 2013
Located near Union Square, locals might be weary to venture where so many tourists flawk. However, this gem of a bar is compltely worth the crowds. If you are looking for something hilarious, entertaining and just plain fun then John Collins is your place. An excellent destination for birthdays or celebrations, this dueling piano bar will have something for everyone. For weekend nights, get a table earlier in the night and enjoy their delicious menu of traditional bar food. Beware on the weekends they always have a line out the door starting at 8pm. The bar is located in the lower basement level, so layer up because once you start dancing it tends to get a little steamy in their. John Collins is a great place to bring visitors, friends, parents and even coworkers. Get as wild or stay as quiet as you would like but everyone will be equally entertained.
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