Bars, like restaurants, are non-smoking. Italians enjoy going out during the evenings, so it's common to have a drink in a bar before dinner. It is called aperitivo. Within the last couple years, started by Milan, a lot of bars have started offering fixed-price cocktails at aperitivo hours (18 - 21) with a free, and often a very good, buffet meal. It's now widely considered stylish to have this kind of aperitivo (called Happy Hour) instead of a structured meal before going out to dance or whatever.