Great Quirky Bars And Restaurants In New York City

Photo of Stephanie Oh
9 February 2017

From organically produced ingredients and authentic eats to weirdly attractive watering holes New York City is full of quirky places you’ll want to visit for a drink or a meal. We pick 10 of the most interesting Big Apple bars and restaurants to drop in on.

New York City | © (vincent desjardins)/Flickr

Please Don’t Tell

Located in Alphabet City, Please Don’t Tell requires a password for entry to its speakeasy bar; if you dial the wrong number, you need to try again and again until you get the right code. A sophisticated and elegant atmosphere makes this bar stand out, and the most awesome part is that the entrance is just through the phone booth. A reservation is required, but they only take same-day reservations. They start receiving calls from 3 PM, so call early if you don’t want to miss out.

Burp Castle | © Jax House/Flickr

Burp Castle

Burp Castle is a middle-aged, monastery-themed bar that worships the diverse collection of beer it offers. If you are anticipating a typical bar ambience, then maybe this isn’t the right place for you. The bartender shushes the guests if the place gets too loud; this is the place where you worship the beer, so it’s better to keep the atmosphere as its theme dictates. Hilarious mural paintings and the extensive collection of Belgian beer will brighten your day after a long tiring day.

Apothéke | © Cory Wright/Flickr

Apothéke Cocktail Bar

A speakeasy bar inside of Gold Flower Restaurant, Apothéke offers an impressive range of exotic cocktails. You may have a difficult time actually finding the bar, but once you do, you will be greeted with beautiful bartenders in white lab coats. There are over 250 cocktails on offer and if you don’t know anything about mixed drinks, don’t worry, just ask one of the mixologists and they will prescribe the right drink for you.

VNYL | © Jason Kuffer/Flickr


A funky restaurant located in Midtown West, Vynl is an Asian fusion restaurant where you can get both a crispy bacon frittata and a savory pad Thai. Decorated with vintage LPs and a disco ball, the restaurant will comfort you with classic American or Thai food as well as offering you a set of quirky restrooms with celebrity names. If you feel like Beyoncé or Elvis, you’re welcome to choose whichever room you want to enter.

Flight 151

Although located amidst chic galleries in an edgy neighborhood, Flight 151 offers the cheapest beer in the city. It is an aviation-themed bar where simple yet beautiful art murals of far away places will bring out your inner wanderlust. At Flight 151, you’ll find burgers and fries, brunches on weekends, $4 margaritas on Mondays, and of course, a happy hour from 5-7 PM, Monday through Friday.

Beauty Bar | © Eden, Janine and Jim/Flickr

Beauty Bar

Not so long ago, Beauty Bar was a go-to place where ladies gathered under chrome-domed hair dryers and gossiped about random stuff. Located in Gramercy, Beauty Bar now offers a retro-beauty salon atmosphere where all-nighters can enjoy martinis as well as receive a top-notch manicure for $10. You’re welcome to gossip and join the ladies while listening to ’80s music.

Ice cream & waffles from Max Brenner | © uıɐɾ ʞ ʇɐɯɐs/Flickr

Max Brenner

With its chocolate-filled pipes inside the restaurant, Max Brenner presents New Yorkers with its chocolate sensory immersion that will brighten your week. With more than 40 locations around the world, Max Brenner has become a chocolate go-to for those with a sweet tooth. Their signature desserts are banana split waffles, rich popsicle fondue, and a dark fudge chocolate heart cake with vanilla ice cream on the side.

Brooklyn Farmacy & Soda Fountain

Tucked inside a restored 1920s apothecary building, the Brooklyn Farmacy & Soda Fountain offers a diverse collection of soda and sundaes, and most importantly, the interior is just as it was in the 1920s. This is, indeed, a perfect place to relax with old and new schoolers. Also, save room for witty-named waffles like Mother’s Helper covered with banana bourbon compote and YOLO topped with a rich ice cream of your choice.

Lillie’s Victorian Establishment

Located near Union Square (with a new location in Time Square too), Lillie’s Victorian Establishment is a full bar with a more sophisticated ambience. With its extensive scotch collection, the bar also offers scrumptious food and a lovely décor. The place is open daily from 11am to 4am, and the kitchen usually closes at 2am, giving you plenty of time to order fried calamari, a rich Angus burger, or a roasted pork chop. The old-school décor is pretty amazing since it extends inside of the restroom too.

Boobie Trap

A kitschy bar with an edgy vibe, Boobie Trap, located in Bushwick, Brooklyn, greets guests with hilarious and warm staff. If you are tired of those ridiculously high-priced shots of vodka in the heart of Manhattan, Boobie Trap will gladly present you with reasonably priced food and cocktails. Order a soft minty grasshopper before you end up staring at those vintage posters of fabulous pinup girls.

The Slaughtered Lamb Pub | © Jazz Guy/Flickr

The Slaughtered Lamb Pub

The Slaughtered Lamb Pub was inspired by the pub located in London, and gracefully welcomes its guests and treats them to its British beer collection, dark and Gothic interior, and tasty meals such as the Inferno Burger or roasted garlic and rosemary wings. The pub is perfect for sipping Royal Oak Pale Ale, playing darts or chilling inside the cozy Werewolf Lounge.

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