It’s the first week of February, which means temperatures in New York still risk dropping below freezing, and you’re starting to realize we have at least two more months of this. Your parka has been dragged around the island, zipped up and down and jerked around and you’re ready to give it a rest. Well we can’t offer an early start to summer, or even a tropical getaway, but we do have a few bars that might help ease the suffering. Give your wind burned face a break and sip something fruity. From airy décor to Caribbean inspire food and beachy cocktails, these NYC bars are a great escape for anyone with the winter blues.
Battery Harris in Williamsburg ranks top of the list whether it’s July or January. This Brooklyn beach bar serves up good vibes, cheap eats, and fun drinks. The inside of the bar is decorated with vibrant floral tables, bright colored walls, and chalkboard signs that will really make you feel like you’re at a beach bar. The outside has a covered patio so you can forget all about the mid-winter wind chills, and get some much needed vitamin D (you’ll need it after slogging down so many pina coladas). Try the jerk chicken sandwich or get there early to get a taste of their breakfast burger. Happy hour runs 4:00 – 7:00 PM Monday through Friday, but their $4 Tecates around the clock are any budget-New Yorker’s friend.
Looking for a Brooklyn spot with a little less beachy and a little more bougie? The Ides sits atop the Wythe hotel in Williamsburg and boasts jaw dropping views of the NYC skyline. The east river wind chills won’t catch you here though, the enclosed space is perfect for a winter hideout. The gleaming sunshine and well-poured cocktails will make you feel like you’re at a rooftop party in the summer. Try the lobster sliders and ‘sixth floor sling’ to really make you forget the plunging temperatures on the other side of the glass.
The best beach for stuffing your face with delicious melty cheese and crispy crust? Pizza Beach. Indulge in the chipotle beef covered ‘taco pizza’ or coconut and plantain topped ‘jerk chicken pizza’—it’s winter, and we have plenty of baggy sweaters to hide under. Pair your pizza with a frozen cocktail or ‘endless summer’ to really get in the sunshiney mood. White floors and string lights above will make you feel like you’re at a beach hideaway. Locations on the Upper and Lower East Side make this the perfect spot no matter what part of the city you’re coming from.
Ready for a trip to New Orleans but still crawling out of the December debt hole? Stop by Claw Daddy’s in the Lower East Side for an authentic Cajun boil – complete with bibs and plastic table coverings. $35 per person gets you the “claw feast”: shrimp, snow crab legs, crawfish, and clams, with your choice of side. Even better than the food is the alcoholic juice bags. Don’t be fooled by the capri sun appearance – these cocktails are strong. Go for happy hour every day until 7:30 PM.
Venture over to Gowanus for a burger and beer outside – even in the dead of winter. Lavender Lake’s expansive patio is filled with heaters in the winter, so you can breathe some much-needed fresh air while staying warm in the winter frost. Happy hour runs 4:00 – 8:00 PM Tuesday through Friday and all day Monday. Get there early for prime seating so you can start sipping your ‘sunny afternoon’ cocktail and pretend it actually is a sunny afternoon. Chomp on the fried chicken or lake burger if you’re feeling particularly hungry. Or pretend it’s a hot day in July and order the brownie fudge sundae with the works.
The first day of spring isn’t until the 20th of March, which means we have quite a ways to go until we can shed our winter layers for good. But NYC has plenty of places making us forget about icy sidewalks and salt-stained shoes. And if you’re a Bedly resident you’re in luck, most of these are right in your neighborhood or just a quick subway ride away.
Photo credits in order of appearance: On the Grid, Thrillist, Eater, Claw Daddy’s, Time Out NY, Lavender Lake.