‘Let your hair hang low’ is the motto at Alberta #3, one of the most reliably buzzing joints in town. Named in homage to 'Alberta #2', a Bob Dylan cover of the blues classic 'Alberta', the bar has a spruced-up rock'n'roll decor theme complete with a huge portrait of Dylan presiding over the small ground-floor bar, and a fresh-faced Jagger staring out off another wall.
Upstairs at the comfy, low-ceilinged bar, you can pull up a stool, if it's not too packed, and order from a decent menu of bar snacks that includes a plate of black olives and piquant parmesan (R$15). Down in the rocking basement space, the DJs might be playing vinyl that customers have brought along so the dancefloor could be jumping to anything from indie to disco – so if you’re in the mood for rock, check who’s on the decks before rolling up or you might be surprised by wall-to-wall MPB.
Stylishly decorated and with a haphazard, beatnik vibe, Alberta #3 might be small, but its three-floor split works well, with a busy dancefloor down in the basement too. Rock up for happy hour (6-10pm), when admission is free, including on Saturday nights, when you may need to queue – so factor in the wait if you’re planning to save on the entry fee.