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Brooklyn nightlife

Brooklyn was a dream. All the things that happened there just couldn't happen. It was all dream stuff. Or was it all real and true and was it that she, Francie, was the dreamer?
- Betty Smith, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn

$1 - €0.91
03:19
45 °
Under the disco ball at dance party Mister Sunday.

Bellocq

  • Greenpoint, Tea, $$$$ $$
  • 104 West St.
  • Brooklyn, 11222
  • +1-800-495-5416
  • Website

Venetian plaster walls and plush upholstery make the tiny tea atelier feel like an oversized jewel box. Jewels indeed — teas are sourced from all over the world, and everything, from the teas to the canisters they come in, is custom made.

Bossa Nova Civic Club

  • Bushwick, Club, Bar, Music, $$$$ $
  • 1271 Myrtle Ave.
  • Brooklyn, 11221
  • +1-718-443-1271
  • Website

A small, remote, vaguely tropical-themed Bushwick dive bar is the center of action for the Brooklyn dance scene. The dance floor is small. The kids can get sloppy. But the DJ lineup is typically excellent and the energy is palpable. The crowd goes wild.

Brooklyn Inn

  • Boerum Hill, Bar, $$$$ $
  • 148 Hoyt St.
  • Brooklyn, 11217
  • +1-718-522-2525
  • Website

A dark, cheap, bare bones, 19th-century tavern for serious drinkers. You may have to push a few bros out of the way to get to your pint of Old Speckled Hen, but it'll also give you a good look at the gorgeous wooden bar. We hear it's currently getting a facelift, but should be open again come May.

The Commodore

  • Williamsburg, Bar, $$$$ $
  • 366 Metropolitan Ave.
  • Brooklyn, 11211
  • +1-718-218-7632
  • Website | Review

An unassuming neighborhood bar is the starting line for an awesome night. Great people watching, kitschy drinks (amaretto float!), and a killer bar menu (it's all about the fried chicken with itsy biscuits and honey butter). Service can be a bit all over the map, but the festive music and vibe more than makes up for it.

Devoción

  • Williamsburg, Cafe, $$$$ $
  • 69 Grand St.
  • Brooklyn, 11249
  • +1-718-285-6180
  • Website

A South Williamsburg roaster where "farm-to-table" is almost an understatement. Beans are sourced (fair trade, of course) from select rural Colombian plantations and shipped to the U.S. within ten days. The huge space has a rustic-meets-industrial feel: high ceilings and concrete floors, exposed brick, wooden tables, and a plant wall.

Extraction Lab

  • Sunset Park, Cafe, $$$$ $$
  • 51 35th St.
  • Brooklyn, 11232
  • +1-718-704-0840
  • Website

The most innovative coffee in Industry City, maybe even New York. They have all the latest equipment, most notably Steampunk vacuum brewers whose glass canisters give the coffee shop a real laboratory feel.

Four Horsemen

  • Williamsburg, Wine Bar, $$$$ $$$
  • 295 Grand St.
  • Brooklyn, 11211
  • +1-718-599-4900
  • Website

Owned by LCD Sound System frontman James Murphy, the hype surrounding the unpretentious wine bar isn't dying anytime soon. Reasonably-priced natural wines, table wines, and unusual varietals comprise the wine list, while cedar and burlap comprise the minimalist decor.

Gutter Bar

  • Greenpoint, Bowling Alley, $$$$ $$
  • 200 North 14th St.
  • Brooklyn, 11249
  • +1-718-387-3585
  • Website | Email | Review

If a "friend" tries to take you to Brooklyn Bowl, run far away — to this dive bar with eight cool and cozy vintage lanes, a rock-and-roll soundtrack, and a low-key '70s vibe.

Habana Outpost

  • Fort Greene, Outdoor Attractions, Bar, $$$$ $
  • 757 Fulton St.
  • Brooklyn, 11217
  • +1-718-858-9500
  • Website | Email

You know it's summer when Habana Outpost opens up its chain link gate, fires-up the food truck grills, and flicks on the bike-powered smoothie machine. The seasonal hangout serves cheap beer and Cuban sandwiches in its open lot; has a DJ, film nights, and crafts for kids; and welcomes a fun, laid-back crowd that spills out onto the streets and nearly turns every day into a block party.

Karasu

  • Fort Greene, Cocktail Bar, $$$$ $$$
  • 166 Dekalb Ave.
  • Brooklyn, 11217
  • +1-347-223-4811
  • Website

Old-school Japanese cocktail culture is alive and well at the 1920s-style izakaya speakeasy where the drinks are more "ceremonial" than "handcrafted." To get there: Pass through bustling, light-filled Walter’s to the quieter, darker, swankier back room hideaway.

The Long Island Bar

  • Cobble Hill, Cocktail Bar, $$$$ $$
  • 110 Atlantic Ave.
  • Brooklyn, 11201
  • +1-718-625-8908
  • Website

An old stevedore haunt of yore, the appeal of the mid-century institution is its decided aversion to trends. The original neon signage, red leather barstools, and classic cocktails help the bar retain an easy authenticity that’s hard to come by.

Loosie's Cafe

  • Williamsburg , Cafe, $$$$ $
  • 93 S. 6th St.
  • Brooklyn, 11249
  • +1-718-384-2904
  • Website

Pull up a hammock and order a matcha at the sunny daytime iteration of nighttime bar Loosie Rouge on the south side of the ‘burg. (Yes, that’s right, there are hammocks. And plants. Many, many plants.) Morning coffee and spirulina doughnuts turn into kale-matcha margaritas and dollar oysters when happy hour starts…at noon.

Madre Mezcaleria

  • Prospect Heights, Bar, $$$$ $$
  • 706 Washington Ave.
  • Brooklyn, 11238
  • +1-718-399-0706
  • Website

The sibling to nearby Prospect Heights Mexican hotspot El Atoradero has nearly 50 mezcals to choose from at all price points. Sip slowly and admire the Mexican talavera tiles that line the counter opposite the bar — the owner brought them back from Puebla herself.

Maison Premiere

  • Williamsburg, Bar, $$$$ $$
  • 298 Bedford Ave.
  • Brooklyn, 11211
  • +1-347-335-0446
  • Website | Email | Review

The more mollusks the merrier is the unofficial motto of the super popular Williamsburg oyster bar. Inspired by the parlors of Paris and the saloons of the Big Easy, it’s a darling jewel box crammed with Belle Epoque references, glistening bivalves, and delta blues sounds.

Music Hall of Williamsburg

  • Williamsburg - North Side, Music, $$$$ $$
  • 66 North 6th St.
  • Brooklyn, 11211
  • +1718-486-5400
  • Website

The Bowery Presents, a concert promoting/booking business in NYC, pretty much has its finger on the pulse of every must-see  indie band, which they'll book at one of their many venues (Mercury Bar, Bowery Ballroom, Brooklyn Steel), including this one in the heart of WIlliamsburg.

Nighthawk Cinema

  • Williamsburg, Cinema, $$$$ $$
  • 136 Metropolitan Ave.
  • Brooklyn, 11249
  • +1-718-384-3980
  • Website | Email

First-run films are paired with themed drinks and food and served in a theater (yes, you may have an adult beverage with your movie). Think signature series like Country Brunchin (live country music, The Longriders, fried chicken), and one-offs like Spring Breakers served with a sex on the beach.

Nowadays

  • Ridgewood, Outdoor Attractions, $$$$ $$
  • 56-06 Cooper Ave.
  • Queens, 11385
  • +1-718-386-0111
  • Website

The two DJs behind Mister Saturday Night have opened a big backyard on Ridgewood/Bushwick border. There’s ample outdoor space (full of New York’s hottest commodity — grass), trees, hills, a a ping pong table, and string lights along the perimeter at night. Play games, eat dinner, have drinks, watch a movie. And check out Mister Sunday, the duo’s epic daytime dance party every Sunday during the summer.

Sauvage

  • Greenpoint, Bistro, $$$$ $$$
  • 905 Lorimer St.
  • Brooklyn, 11222
  • +1-718-486-6816
  • Website

A Parisian-style restaurant from the folks behind nearby Maison Premiere that spills outside in warmer months. Along with chef Lisa Giffen, they’ve brought with them head bartender Will Elliott, whose unrivaled commitment to cocktailing means he keeps several types of ice and some hundred-plus small-batch liquors on hand.

Summers

  • Williamsburg , Juice Bar, $$$$ $
  • 155 S. 4th St.
  • Brooklyn, 11211
  • +1-347-987-3558
  • Website

Juice so fresh it always feels like summer. Surfer-bro-comes-to-Brooklyn is the vibe at this juice bar, where the cold-pressed beverages are simple, the smoothies are superfood-packed, and the egg sandwiches make you forget drinks are the star.

Sunny's Bar

  • Red Hook, Bar, $$$$ $
  • 253 Conover St.
  • Brooklyn
  • Website

Red Hook's clubhouse is a dive bar well-worth the transit trouble you'll encounter getting there (it's a 1-3 mile walk from the nearest train stations). Being that it's an old mariner's hang, it's weathered, cozy, salty, and filled with live bluegrass in the back. Excellent for catching up and/or canoodling any time of year.

Weather Up

  • Prospect Heights, Bar, $$$$ $$
  • 589 Vanderbilt Ave.
  • Brooklyn, 11238
  • Website

American Nouveau in Prospect Heights, Brooklyn. Sit at the slender bar with piano key stools to watch mixology in action. Take your precious cocktail to the back patio for mingling. 

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