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Since opening last year, this spot has shown a knack for doing winter-drinking right (and convincing us it’s worth leaving the house). Sipping a $2 hot toddy (they’re running a special all winter) by the spacious, surprisingly warm firepits out back is enough to make you forget the wintry mix sitting just outside the fence.
64 Harris Street, Williamsburg.
The Rookery does a number of things well—cocktails, scotch eggs, and nautical decor—but its best work to date is its fries (Mums Chips, if you’d prefer). They’re exactly right—large, Belgian-style and perfectly cooked—and come with a nice dusting of scallions. More importantly, they’re served alongside house-blend Jamaican dipping sauce and scotch bonnett mayonnaise. It’s all as creamy, boozy, and rib-sticking as it sounds.
425 Troutman Street, Bushwick.
There are a lot of things we love about this wonderfully low-key and whiskey-centric addition to Bed-Stuy’s bar scene, chief among them their decorative use of their namesake stereos, which have been used to create an entire wall (which leads to one of the coziest back rooms in the borough, by the way).
1112 Bedford Avenue, Bed-Stuy.
When we drink, we like to drink. This can lead to sticky situations if there isn’t any food around to soak up all that alcohol. But do we want to eat just any old food? Are Goldfish crackers really good enough? Sometimes we want bar food that’s just as adventurous and high-concept as the cocktails we’re guzzling. The food menu here (created by Andy Ricker, of neighboring Pok Pok Ny) features the best chicken wings we’ve ever had (fish sauce is the not-so-secret ingredient) as well as other authentic Southeast Asian bar foods, all of which more than serve the purpose of filling your stomach and allowing you to drink even more of the excellent, vaguely tropical cocktails. It’s win-win.
115 Columbia Street, Columbia Street Waterfront District.
You’ve just suffered through a debilitating day at work; do you hightail it to the bar to drown your sorrows in a pitcher of Yuengling or slink straight home to cuddle in a corner with your dog? Thanks to the proudly pro-pooch crew here, you don’t have to choose between the two.
303 Bedford Avenue, Williamsburg.