Best of Houston® 2022

Best Of Houston® 2022: Best Dive Bar

It's fellowship over hardship at The Cozy
It's fellowship over hardship at The Cozy Photo by Jesse Sendejas Jr.
Best Dive Bar: Cozy Corner

If your idea of a dive bar requires a specific seediness — an air of back-alley danger populated with downtrodden, booze-soaked, shadowy figures, let’s say — then maybe the Cozy Corner is not for you (also, stop reading so many Raymond Chandler novels). This longtime Westbury watering hole is the sort of dive bar which celebrates fellowship instead of hardship.

Except for an interesting corn chip snack mix that’s always available in a large Tupperware bin, there’s nothing that distinguishable about the dive itself. It’s one big room with a bar in the center from whence the cheap drinks flow. There are a few televisions about for sports fans and an outdoor deck for smokers, a pool table, a TouchTunes jukebox. The bar gets nearly all of its charm from its true-blue following, faithful patrons who simply call it “The Cozy” and then help it live up to its name.

Like Cheers, it’s got a mascot whose name everybody knows (not Norm, but Jimmy) and a kind karaoke DJ named Dawn who never judges the song selections or vocal talents of The Cozy’s wannabe singers, regulars like Adam and Chef Paul, who have mastered Radiohead’s “Creep” and Elton John’s “I Guess That’s Why They Call It the Blues,” respectively. Over a few recent months, we eavesdropped on area teachers toasting the end of another school year, crashed a wedding shower, heard an old man sing “My Humps” for stunned on-lookers and celebrated Pride at the bar’s annual party, always a fun time. The Cozy's customers convene to help each other stay afloat rather than drown their sorrows. They engage in friendly conversations and share laid-back moments, the sorts that are rarely depicted in bleak noir novels.

11530 Burdine, Houston
Cozy Corner on Facebook
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