95 Best Bars in Brooklyn, New York City

Miss Favela Brazilian Botequim

The flag outside announces Miss Favela's allegiance to Brazil—a favela is a Brazilian slum—and the theme continues inside, where the brick walls are painted green and yellow, and rickety metal tables are covered in brightly colored oilcloth. There are Brazilian specialties for lunch and dinner, but after 10 pm the tables are cleared and the place becomes an all-out dance party, fueled by pitchers of caipirinhas, Brazil's cachaça-laced favorite drink. On Saturday, people dance samba to a live band until the DJ takes over and the vibe becomes more clubby.

Music Hall of Williamsburg

Williamsburg

This intimate tri-level music venue in a former mayonnaise factory has excellent acoustics, so it's no surprise that it draws die-hard fans of rock and indie music with its quality lineups. There's balcony seating and an additional bar upstairs.

Night of Joy

A night out at Night of Joy feels like drinking in a bohemian, slightly run-down fortune teller's den—the kind of place in a novel by Oscar Wilde or Gabriel García Márquez. The spacious lounge is outfitted with plush, mismatched sofas, oriental rugs, antique wall sconces, and a Victorian birdcage; peeling plaster gives it the air of dilapidated luxury. The libations are worth savoring—try the basil-lime gimlet or the rosemary and ginger bourbon. The rooftop patio is the place to be in summer: it has its own bar and patio furniture for lounging.

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Nowadays

Bushwick

Think of Nowadays as a club with a conscience. This sprawling, indoor/outdoor space on the border between two neighborhoods (Bushwick and Ridgewood) in two boroughs (Brooklyn and Queens) and right next to a huge cemetery is up for just about anything. You'll find it packed during daylight hours with families enjoying drinks, Asian-inflected bites and ramen at picnic tables, or pulsing in the evenings with civic-minded Brooklynites taking in a lecture or documentary screening before dancing the night away. Sunday is the most popular here, with an all-day outdoor DJ dance party called Mister Sunday that draws a diverse crowd.

Olympia Wine Bar

DUMBO
The tables are candelit and the flowers are fresh at this neighborhood spot run by an owner of 68 Jay Street Bar. The kitchen turns out crostini, salads, and cheese and charcuterie boards; and in addition to wine, the bar offers craft beer and smart takes on all things shaken or stirred.

Other Half Brewing Company

Carroll Gardens
Founded in 2014, the Other Half brews its famous IPAs and a few other beers in a former warehouse near the Gowanus Expressway on the edge of Carroll Gardens. Despite the industrial location and small, spartan taproom, fans of hops regularly pack it in here with just enough room to bend an elbow. There are no flights but brews like Cheddar Broccoli, Ain't Nothing Nice, and True Green are poured in four-ounce samples.
195 Centre St., Brooklyn, NY, 11231, USA
347-987--3527
Nightlife Details
Rate Includes: Closed Sun.--Wed.

Output

This is Brooklyn's hottest nightclub and the cavernous converted warehouse draws top DJs spinning for crowds dancing under disco balls until the sun comes up. Stay in the main bilevel space, or head to the smaller Panther Room. The rooftop has great views.

Pearl's Social and Billy Club

Bushwick
Emblematic of the new Bushwick, this chill spot looks cool and has a laid-back personality as well as patrons who have lots of interesting things to say. The expertly mixed cocktails are served in mason jars. Locals love Pearl's for day drinking; nighttime can rock until 4 am.

Pete's Candy Store

Nope, it's not a candy store; it's an intimate bar that hosts nightly music performances as well as spelling bees, bingo, and a "quizz-off" contest every Wednesday night. The reading series held here on alternate Thursday evenings attracts high-caliber participants.

Pine Box Rock Shop

In a former coffin ("pine box") factory, this bar and performance space is best known for its beer selection, though the specialty vegan cocktails are worth checking out, too. Weekly trivia, karaoke, and live-music events take place, and every month or so the space hosts a Saturday "vegan shop-up" with vendors selling crafts and notably fine vegan food.

Radegast Hall & Biergarten

Williamsburg

The vibe can be boisterous at this sprawling beer hall, where plenty of communal tables foster a convivial atmosphere. The Central European beers on tap pair well with hearty foods like schnitzel, goulash, and giant pretzels from the kitchen, or brats and currywurst from the grill. There's free live music for the brunch crowd on weekends.

Royal Palms Shuffleboard

Could there be anything more Brooklyn than a shuffleboard club with employees cast straight from a Wes Anderson movie (the jumpsuit uniforms!)? Locals head to this massive space after work for league play on Mondays and Tuesdays and cocktails named after shuffleboard legends. Weekends can get crowded, but borrow a board game until you score a waxed concrete lane. Groups of 10 or more can reserve 48 hours in advance for a lane, cabana, and drink packages.

Saint Vitus

Greenpoint
Hidden behind an unmarked black door, this warehouse music venue named for a Black Sabbath song has a Gothic design, with red votive candles that cast a glow over the black walls, massive mahogany bar, and relics from old churches. Bands play heavy metal and rock music most nights.

Sea Witch

As the name implies, the Sea Witch is nautically themed—with mermaid murals on the walls and a giant fish tank behind the bar. The back patio, though, with its wooden benches, miniwaterfall, and stone-lined stream, is the real gem. The casual bar fare includes a fillet of fish sandwich and a juicy burger.

Skinny Dennis

This honky-tonk has everything you'd want in a dive bar: peanut shells littering the floor, a vintage jukebox, a long bar with vinyl stools, and cheap drinks. This is Williamsburg, so the quality of beer is better than average—in addition to Coors and Guinness, there are craft beers by Brooklyn Brewery, Allagash, and Sixpoint. Live country music starts around 9 pm most nights.

South

The epitome of a laid-back neighborhood bar, South is known for its friendly bartenders, free popcorn, and extra-long happy hours. Lingering is encouraged and easy to do, especially on a weekend afternoon outside on the patio. There are board games to borrow, too.
629 5th Ave., Brooklyn, NY, 11215, USA
718-832--4720

Spritzenhaus 33 Bierhall

Greenpoint
There are 25 taps worth of excellent craft and imported beers, as well as wines served by the carafe, at this massive, lively beer hall. Seating is at long communal tables, which encourage mingling, and there are board games and Jenga to play. The garage-style windows are open in summer; in winter, there's a fireplace.

Superfine

DUMBO

The narrow bi-level floor plan might seem a little odd, but friendly service and convivial, colorful crowds transform this renovated warehouse into a welcoming, quirky neighborhood spot. The kitchen's organic menu changes seasonally, but the real action is at the bar, where stiff concoctions are poured near the orange-felt pool table. There are also weekend DJs and monthly local artist shows.

The Adirondack

It's just steps from the subway entrance, but the Adirondack feels more like an unpretentious bar somewhere upstate. New York State beer and cider are the specialties, but the friendly bartenders also know how to make good cocktails. The bar snacks are the perfect accompaniment—try the grilled cheese sandwich or a hot pretzel.

The Castello Plan

With cozy communal tables and a narrow seasonal patio, this wine bar attracts casually sophisticated neighbors with more than just the eclectic wine list. There are also inventive cocktails and a curated selection of bottled beers and wine, as well as cheese and charcuterie and other small and large plates.

The Cobra Club

Bushwick
Locals love this multifaceted hangout from early morning to late at night: it's a fun cocktail bar in the evening, with karaoke, dance parties, live music, and movie screenings. During the day it's a café and yoga studio, including an infamous metal yoga class (vinyasa practice backed by doom metal music).

The Commodore

The door may be unmarked, but this bar is far from unknown: on weekends, it gets packed so tight it can be hard to navigate the sea of hip kids who come for reasonably priced drinks, renowned fried chicken, and nachos piled high with veggies, beans, and cheese. A retro vibe, fueled by the jukebox, enhances the cool factor. There are a few spacious booths, but get here early to snag one.
366 Metropolitan Ave., Brooklyn, NY, 11211, USA
718-218--7632

The Diamond

Greenpoint
The regulars come to this unpretentious bar for two reasons: beer and shuffleboard. You can order wine if you must, but the well-curated beer list is the real crowd-pleaser. Eight taps feature a rotating selection of craft beers, from the hyperlocal Greenpoint Beer & Ale Company to Belgian De Dolle Brouwers.

The Gate

The corner patio makes The Gate, now in its third decade, the best spot to drink outdoors in the Slope. The menu is all about the rotating selection of craft beers—about 25 on tap at any given time—and hard-to-find bottles and cans. There's also a full bar. Trivia, television show viewing parties, and open-mike nights keep the neighborhood vibe alive.

The Good Room

Greenpoint
DJs spin tunes while a cool crowd dances under the disco ball at this happening nightclub, which made a cameo on Aziz Ansari's hit Netflix series, Master of None. The bar is adjacent to the dance floor, and there's a smaller side room if you want a breather.

The Gutter

Greenpoint
Dark and spacious, with rock music, pitchers of beer, and happy hour specials, this is the perfect dive bar/bowling alley. You can play pool in the main room or bowl at the eight lanes in the side room ($7 per game or $40–$45 per hour; $3 shoe rental; bowling is cash only). Bowling leagues meet Monday through Thursday, which tend to be quieter than weekends, when bands play live music.

The Lock Yard

In an old locksmith shop where owner and local restaurateur (he also owns the Kettle Black bar and Ho’Brah taco joint) Tommy Casatelli worked as a kid, this neighborhood hot spot summons a young craft-beer-loving clientele with its impressive array of American beers, plus a handful of sustainable wines and specialty cocktails—and the 1,300-square-foot heated beer garden with picnic tables and festive lights. The menu features artisanal sausages and hot dogs, knishes, and fries.

The Mayflower

Tiny, candlelit, and discreet, this attitude-free cocktail den is equally suited to a romantic tryst, casual nightcap, or predinner drink while awaiting your table at Aita, the owners' Italian restaurant next door. The bar is located in a carriage house and, unlike many other watering holes in the neighborhood, usually stays open until 2 or 3 am.

The Richardson

This corner bar serves classic cocktails, beer, and wine. The decor takes its cues from a century-old saloon, with dark wood, damask wallpaper, and dim lighting. Whiskey-barrel tables and vintage cash registers further set the scene. Though the drinks and the gregarious bartenders who craft them are the stars here, there are some good nibbles, too. An excellent cheese plate—perfect for sharing—comes with your choice of locally sourced specimens.

The Water Tower

Williamsburg

Perched atop the Arlo Williamsburg, overlooking its rooftop pool, this ambitious bar is one of four party venues within the hotel. Not one of New York’s actual iconic water towers, but rather a conical glass structure made in tribute to them, the bar is unabashedly upscale in a “Manhattan” sort of way, with inventive albeit pricey cocktails. The 360-degree views are some of the city’s best, and if you’re looking for a comprehensive night out, starting with drinks and ending with a DJ dance party, this is your ticket.