Hanley’s vs. Whiskey: Where you should go out on a Wednesday

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Ever since the demise of Fish Co. (only class of ’18 will remember), the go-to spot for Wednesday nights at Brown has remained kind of open. Although the Whiskey Republic was the reigning champ for a while, it seems as if the crown is still up for grabs. This year, Whiskey’s main contestant for Brown University students on a Wednesday night is Hanley’s Ale House (also downtown). Why can’t there just be a bar on Thayer Street, am I right?

Cover Charge

There is always some kind of $10 or above cover charge to get in Whiskey. That means that, including the cost of the uber there, you’re shelling out somewhere in the region of $15 dollars to get into the Whiskey Republic. On the other hand, I don’t think I have ever paid to get into Hanley’s. The only thing I’ve ever had to do is download a free app (which I then promptly deleted off my phone).

Advantage: Hanley’s


Whiskey is definitely walkable. Hanley’s is definitely not. I feel like this has been one of the main barriers for Hanley’s in it’s efforts to establish itself as Brown’s Wednesday night bar of choice. But to be totally honest, you were going to uber anyway, weren’t you?

Advantage: Whiskey

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Recent Events

It’s not closed anymore, but it’s a little off-putting.

Advantage: Hanley’s


Maybe it’s because Whiskey is more popular with other schools like PC, but there’s usually a long 18+ line. The 21+ line goes much faster (but doesn’t Whiskey kind of lose its allure once you turn 21 anyway?). On the other hand, Hanley’s doesn’t even have lines. It’s more of an every-man-for-himself mob situation, with enough pushing and yelling that you either fight your way to the front pretty fast or leave in fear of getting trampled.

Advantage: Whiskey if you’re 21+, Hanley’s if you’re a pusher



Name Recognition

“Whiskey Wednesdays” does kind of have a nice ring to it. Hanley’s Hotspot? Alehouse Evenings? Not so much.

Advantage: Whiskey


Honestly, I think the bouncers at the Whiskey Republic take pleasure in being mean. If you don’t have a state issued drivers license (like, say, if you’re an international student or maybe you can’t drive) they will definitely give you a hard time. I know people who have been forced to go get their passports to get into Whiskey. Hanley’s is much more lenient…

Advantage: Hanley’s, but who knows how long this will last 



Interior Design

I can’t be totally sure but I think Hanley’s is bigger? I know that there are definitely at least two stages at Hanley’s. Are there any stages at Whiskey? For some reason, I can only see Whiskey as kind of a dimly-lit blur. Hanley’s has strobe lights and stuff, which is cool. I think Whiskey has an outside area which is also cool… but I can’t be sure.

Advantage: Hard to say. Will have to revisit both these establishments in the daytime to assess.

Verdict: Hanley’s! Or just stay in and do your homework, okay?


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