Best dive when you want to get carded and feel young: Maz Bar
Serving beer for longer than almost anyone can remember, Maz has been a staple dive bar of NDG for years upon years. Originally called “Ma's,” named after the owner Ma Heller, the bar changed its name in an effort to seem trendy, though any appeal has long since been lost. Don't take that as an insult towards the bar though, because the quiet, grungy atmosphere (pool table and air hockey included) is a relaxing break from the other watering holes to be found in NDG. Make sure to bring your ID if you look even a little young though, as you will get carded.
Best to hear some metal-guitar shredding: Crobar
Don't bother heading anywhere else on Crescent St if you want to hear some live tunes, because even though Crobar may not look (or smell) like the prettiest of venues, it definitely attracts some fairly talented rockers. Expect to hear tunes more on the head-bangers side of the musical spectrum; Crobar's stage is open to practically any kind of tunesmith, making for some pretty fantastic jam sessions.
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Michael D’Alimonte is a Montreal writer who will never, ever, ever get tired of neon and cheap beer. Follow him on Twitter for proof.