For all the literature lovers out there, these are the seven bars to visit in New York so you can drink the same beer as Hunter S. Thompson or sit in Dorothy Parker’s favorite booth.
The Round Table Room is the restaurant where the famed group of writers, critics, and actors known as the ‘Algonquin Round Table’ congregated for long lunches filled with brainstorming, boozing, and industry gossip, and The Blue Bar is the adjacent bar at The Algonquin Hotel. Charter members of the Round Table include literary legends Dorothy Parker, Heywood Broun, Ruth Hale, Franklin Pierce Adams, George S. Kaufman, and more. The group would often expand to welcome Harpo Marx, Margaret Leech, Frank Sullivan, and Donald Ogden Stewart, among others. Stop in for a drink and soak up the creative energies still floating around this gorgeous space.
The Algonquin Hotel, 59 West 44th Street, New York, NY, USA +1 212 840 6800
Looking for a tall glass of dark beer, raw onions, and a seat that E.E. Cummings once occupied? Look no farther than McSorley’s Old Ale House, an East Village institution. The historic bar (which only started serving ladies in 1970) is the subject of a 1923 E.E. Cummings poem, and Hunter S. Thompson, Joseph Mitchell, and other illustrious writers were also regulars. Fun extra fact: Abraham Lincoln, Ulysses S. Grant, and Teddy Roosevelt also visited McSorley’s in their day. The best present-day part? Two-for-one mugs of crisp, cold, cheap beer. Your options are light or dark, so leave the fuss at home.
The White Horse Tavern in the West Village is one of the few gathering spots of creative types in the 1950s and 1960s that remains open today. Dylan Thomas was a patron of the White Horse (and in fact, imbibed heavily there before he returned to the Chelsea Hotel, got ill, and passed away a few days later of unrelated causes). Jack Kerouac was also a regular, and other literary guests included James Baldwin, Mary Travers, Norman Mailer, Hunter S. Thompson, and Jane Jacobs. The bar is still cash only, but with drinks as cheap as they are, you probably won’t need too many bills.