Drinking Age in NYC?

Old Mar 29th, 2010, 11:54 AM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 1,005
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Drinking Age in NYC?

We will be travelling with our kids to NYC who are 20 3/4 years old (twin boys).

Will we have trouble with ordering alcoholic drinks for them? What happens if we parents order an alcoholic drink and share it with our kids?

Will there be a problem if we want to go to a night club (e.g. the Rooftop in the Empire Hotel) or the Terra Blues Club with our kids?

Sorry for these questions from a concerned European father.

BTW, what can we expect from the Rooftop? Is is a sort of dancing club or just a bar? What would the dresscode be? Any advice is appreciated from the clueless.
Echnaton is offline  
Old Mar 29th, 2010, 12:02 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 7,342
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
21 is the drinking age. You can look at the laws online to see if there is any exception re parents giving the kid a drink.
vjpblovesitaly is offline  
Old Mar 29th, 2010, 12:04 PM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 26,243
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
There is no exception regarding parents/kids in a licensed establishment. They can lose their license if they serve your kids alchohol or if they serve it to you and you do. That said, they may or may not care/check.
sf7307 is offline  
Old Mar 29th, 2010, 12:09 PM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 10,210
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Drinking age is 21, not 20-3/4. It's illegal for minors to drink in New York whether or not their parents order and serve the drinks to them. However, as sf7307 and vjpblovesitaly point out, not all bars are going to care or even notice. But if you order alcohol for your minor children, they could be carded at the time of ordering, even in a restaurant, if they don't look 21.

They won't be allowed to enter a nightclub if they aren't 21. Most clubs DO check IDs.
doug_stallings is offline  
Old Mar 29th, 2010, 12:12 PM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 19,230
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
If they ask for ID, your kids are out of luck.

You cannot legally order alcohol and share with your underage kids, but as sf7307 said, they may choose not to notice.
panecott is offline  
Old Mar 29th, 2010, 01:12 PM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 23,138
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Our 23 year old son, even when travelling with us, has ID checked everywhere - on cruise ships, in nice restaurants. The liability and penalties are so high today that I would not count on their being allowed to drink or perhaps even permitted entry.

His ID was even checked on a cruise to Alaska when we ordered a bottle of wine for the table - they would not even give him a wine glass until he produced ID.
gail is offline  
Old Mar 29th, 2010, 01:26 PM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 8,030
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
The US does not enjoy the European attitudes towards drinks and wine. We consider it EVIL. Of course, we have a huge underage drink problem -- but that is beside the point. And parents have been arrested for sharing their drinks. Our 30 year old daughter-in-law is frequently asked her ID even when with family. Sorry, that we are not more enlightened in some areas.
fmpden is offline  
Old Mar 29th, 2010, 01:33 PM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 11,525
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
It's not just the 20-somethings; I was carded yesterday and I'm 49.

Lee Ann
ElendilPickle is offline  
Old Mar 29th, 2010, 02:17 PM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 34,885
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Most places I buy alcohol card EVERYONE regardless of age, unless you looked 100, I suppose. They have carded me and I'm in my 50s. It is just automatic and avoids any arguments (some people don't like being carded, I have no idea why, it doesn't take much time). I don't care.

I think you can thank Elizabeth Dole for this one (a Republican, wife of Bob Dole, used to be Sec of Transportation or something when she did this). When I was young, you could drink at 18 in my state, which was reasonable, I thought. You could drink beer, just not the alcohol like whiskey, gin, whatever, which is a good compromise. I think it's stupid the way college kids now can't even go out to a bar and have some beers. We didn't have people getting drunk in dorms back then, either (at least none I lived in). She blackmailed all the states into upping the drinking age or she'd reduce their highway funds.
Christina is online now  
Old Mar 29th, 2010, 02:22 PM
  #10  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 1,005
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Lee Ann, wasn't that a fabulous day?

BTW, it gives me hope (although I am slightly past 50).

I must add, Lee Ann, you are responsible for a wonderful day we had in Oxford because we have read your trip report. With one of my sons, we found Beren's and Luthien's grave and soaked up the atmosphere.

And another time, in Santa Fe, it was you who recommended a certain liquor store to us where we bought (among other things) a beautiful bottle of Tequila Patron which we enjoyed in front of our kiva fireplace...

You see, you have always been an inspiration for us.

And now, such a disappointment. Yes, fmpden, we have learnt to expel Puritans, Amish, Baptists and other lunatics from Europe, but we have also learnt that there are a few regions in the U.S. where you still find some common sense, e.g. Louisiana, Texas and New Mexico.

I should have known that NYC comes second after Utah, regarding the attitude towards alcohol.

But you must see my responsibility as a caring father: I am the one who has to feed the family. And if foreign laws prevent me from fulfilling my duty - who else takes care of my poor children when they are winding with tremors and spasms because New York State laws deprive them of their natural diet which they daily enjoy in Europe?

I am afraid we have to feed our children in the privacy of our hotel rooms. Before leaving Europe, I will provide ourselves with a few bottles in the duty free store.

Thanks for your insights (although I hoped for better news).
Echnaton is offline  
Old Mar 29th, 2010, 03:15 PM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 10,210
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
It's funny because I lived in Louisiana when the drinking age had been recently raised to 21, and I always thought it charming that kids couldn't buy alcohol legally but could drink it legally when their parents bought it for them. Unfortunately, despite its progressive reputation, New York is really behind the times in many ways. Some families in Long Island were even arrested and charged for allowing their kids to consume alcohol in their private home. We are a country of puritans!!!
doug_stallings is offline  
Old Mar 29th, 2010, 04:46 PM
  #12  
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 4,935
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
My experience in NYC is I always order a bottle of wine for teh table & they always bring glasses for everyone. Never been carded, never been asked.
SAnParis2 is offline  
Old Mar 29th, 2010, 04:56 PM
  #13  
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 57,890
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
The drinking age is 21 everywhere in the US. And although it may seem silly this is enforced very strictly most places, since restaurants don;t want to lose their liquor licenses. Ordering drinks yourself and giving them to the kids is not fair to the restaurant - and they will not appreciate it. (And expect anyone under 30 to be carded routinely.)

And agree, that if parents serve drinks to kids under 21 at home and an accident results the parents are legally responsible - to the tune of big $ or even jail time.

For a long time we had a horrendous number of deaths due to young people drinking and driving and most places take these laws very seriously.

(I don;t agree - I was raised having a little bit of wine since I was about 14 - as were my step-daughters - but then we knew there was no driving involved. I think this is a healthier attitude and helps prevent binge drinking of Olde Sweat Sox as soon as kids can get illegal ID - but understand the need where every 16 year old drives constantly.)
nytraveler is offline  
Old Mar 29th, 2010, 04:56 PM
  #14  
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 695
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
When I was 18 growing up in New York, I could drink alcohol and die in Vietnam at 18 but I couldn't vote. Now, people can vote and die in Afghanistan or Iraq at 18 but they can't legally have a beer. I don't believe that anyone should drink and drive at any age but after the age of 18, a kid is no longer a minor and should be allowed to drink.
Supercilious is offline  
Old Mar 29th, 2010, 04:58 PM
  #15  
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 10,317
Likes: 0
Received 3 Likes on 1 Post
Don't sweat it Echnaton, assuming your sons are reasonably virile, no one is going to card them in a restaurant. My son has been served in NY, with or without us, since he was 19. He is now near to 21, and just the other week was served without a question in our company (as well as with his equally under age friends later that week). Now, don't lie. If someone asks, admit that the kid is under age. They won't ask. The police have better things to do than check IDs in restaurants. Most of them also grew up in a more civilized time when 18 was the legal age. (I hate Elizabeth Dole -- she also ruined the lines of several sporty vehicles with her dumb third brake light rule.)

Clubs are a different story. It is unlikely they will be admitted or, if they are, will not receive a wristband which entitles them to order drinks. Clubs suck, anyway.

Enjoy our puritan-burdened land and stick it to them as able!
Fra_Diavolo is online now  
Old Mar 29th, 2010, 05:05 PM
  #16  
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 26,710
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
The drinking age was 18 for many years in NY. But the drinking age in Connecticut and New Jersey was 21 and kids were coming from the other states to drink, creating a problem for everyone.

Many kids from the burbs still come to drink and party in Manhattan.
Aduchamp1 is offline  
Old Mar 29th, 2010, 05:54 PM
  #17  
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 5,309
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I have to side with Fra D, my son used to visit friends in NYC when he was 19 or 20 and he said they were always served. I was shocked because here in California they are very strict. I wonder if it is more lax in NYC because driving isn't a big factor.
SeeHag is offline  
Old Mar 29th, 2010, 06:44 PM
  #18  
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 1,535
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Echnaton,

The following suggestion is made in all sincerity and humility. If it comes across as sarcastic or snarky or moralizing, it is not meant to - it's just hard to put this in writing and make it sound like it would if spoken. I realize I might be taking my life in my hands by making it, but here goes ...

Why not just have your sons (and maybe you, too, as a show of solidarity with them) go without alcohol for the entire time you are in New York?

Before you start to protest, look at it this way - how many times have you seen or heard travelers told that they are not in their home countries, so OF COURSE things are different, and they should just go with the flow and not complain (even if it seems the "wrong" way to do things)? That is part of experiencing the different culture, right?

The drinking age of 21 is part of American law/culture (although some people would, I imagine, argue that flouting the law is part of American culture as well). So just roll with it. No need to sneak the boys alcohol or see if they can get away with ordering drinks.

Frankly, and in all seriousness, I would worry that someone who could not go a week or so without alcohol (or chocolate, or meat, or television, or Internet access, or anything else that is pleasurable but not really essential to life) has a problem with addiction and might need to seek help.

Do I drink? I admit I don't. But what I'm talking about really is not about drinking (or any other specific behavior). It is about people (whoever they are) respecting the laws/customs of whatever place they are visiting (whether or not they agree with them) - or, if they can't do that, then choosing not to visit rather than stewing about it the whole time they are there. That advice certainly applies to me.

And to my fellow citizens of the USA, before anyone jumps all over me, you first have to promise never to ridicule another American who complains that there is not enough ice in the drinks, or the food tastes different, or there is too much cigarette smoke, or whatever else people get ridiculed for complaining about because it isn't like they want it or are used to at home.
Cranachin is offline  
Old Mar 29th, 2010, 06:53 PM
  #19  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 2,943
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
>The US does not enjoy the European attitudes towards drinks and wine. We consider it EVIL. Of course, we have a huge underage drink problem<

Sorry, but Europe has a big underage drinking problem, too. It is a myth that European teens don't drink.

http://tinyurl.com/ygouokk

Thin
ThinGorjus is offline  
Old Mar 29th, 2010, 06:55 PM
  #20  
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 26,243
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Cranachin, we can huddle together while they throw tomatoes at us -- I agree with you completely
sf7307 is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Manage Preferences - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Your Privacy Choices -