New York City's Best Winter Bars

Matthew Creegan

New York City is home to some of the world’s finest bars and restaurants. However, winter in New York can be a windy, bitter experience undoubtedly best spent indoors. Stop by these bars to escape the mid-winter freeze.

1. Fifth Avenue

Bar, American

Named after its address, 230 Fifth Avenue is a two-level rooftop lounge only a stone’s throw from the famous Flatiron Building. The dance floor has panoramic views of the city, while powerful heat lamps and cozy red robes keep guests warm on the roof. A trendy, cozy vibe goes hand-in-hand with 230 Fifth’s signature hot ciders and hot chocolates, served on the second floor rooftop bar.

2. Manhattan Inn

Bar, Restaurant, American

This piano bar and restaurant serves up excellent cocktails, great vibes and a back room with a white grand piano. On Wednesdays and Sundays the Manhattan Inn hosts free live performances from a variety of artists around the city. At the weekend, the piano is covered up and the quiet space transforms into a party spot with a dance floor, DJs, and a hip, young crowd.

3. Weather Up

Cocktail Bar, Bar, American

Weather Up, Vanderbilt Avenue
Image courtesy of Weather Up

This swanky and intimate bar boasts some of the best cocktails in the city. Nestled among a row of restaurants and bars in the up and coming neighborhood of Prospect Heights, tourists and locals alike can appreciate the bar’s proximity to the Barclays Center and the unique blend of old brownstones with contemporary construction. The ever-changing cocktail list and unmarked entrance give it a nice speakeasy vibe. Step inside this unassuming bar to find candles illuminating a classically tiled curved ceiling and an ever-changing cocktail list. With jazzy vibes and top-notch bartenders, Weather Up is the perfect place to grab a winter drink.

4. Spritzenhaus

Bar, German

Spritzenhaus33 beer hall in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, 33 nassau st.. Image shot 12/2015. Exact date unknown.
© Robert K. Chin - Storefronts / Alamy Stock Photo
In the summertime, Spritzenhaus’s large windows open up to create a breezy and casual atmosphere. In the winter months, the windows are shut tight, the fireplaces are lit and the long bier garden-style tables are filled with a mix of twenty-somethings drinking one of the almost 50 import and domestic beers on tap.

5. The Garret

Bar, American

The Garret is made visible from Bleecker Street by a bright neon sign in the window that says ‘Soul.’ It is seemingly inaccessible from the street level, leading aspiring drinkers to circle the block searching for a way to penetrate the brick walls and ascend to the cozy second floor speakeasy. Only those who are in the know (or who are willing to spark up conversation with a Five Guys employee) know how to get in. The entrance is hidden in the back of the burger joint, where an inconspicuous bouncer stands casually by the counter waiting to admit people to the upper level. The bar is small and cozy, so it’s low-key atmosphere helps to keep it comfortable. Classically styled and filled with eclectic artwork, The Garrett is a great place for a winter date night.

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