There’s a lot to love about the variety of bars on and around Fremont Street. Each of them has a different atmosphere and approach to how they serve up booze. If you can’t find a downtown Las Vegas bar that feels comfortable, you just haven’t visited enough of them. Sometimes it seems like Fremont might be getting close to tapping every possible bar concept, but different ideas keep coming to life.
Before visiting the recently reopened Atomic Liquors, we hadn’t realized that the area was missing one rather obvious style of watering hole—the neighborhood bar.
Sure, Atomic Liquors has the whole atomic testing theme, but that theme is minimal. On a small monitor above the urinal in the men’s room, they run videos of atomic bomb tests, and some of the artwork harkens back to Nevada’s mushroom-cloud-rich past. However, most of what adorns the walls are artifacts from Atomic Liquors’ past.
At its heart, Atomic Liquors feels like any small-town or neighborhood corner bar in America. It’s a welcoming spot to belly up to the bar, carry on a conversation and have a cold beer or cocktail. It’s not overly kitchy and is about as unpretentious as they come. The bartenders are friendly, the music isn’t too loud and the patrons aren’t there to impress anyone.
Restoring a piece of Las Vegas history made Atomic Liquors’ reopening a noteworthy achievement, but offering an unpretentious, friendly neighborhood feel is what will lead us to return many times.