The Dead Rabbit

Bars Financial District
  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • 4 out of 5 stars
(9 user reviews)
25 Love It
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1/6
Photograph: Filip Wolak

Battle Annie at the Dead Rabbit

2/6
Photograph: Filip Wolak

Pistache Fizz at the Dead Rabbit

3/6
Photograph: Filip Wolak

Byrhh Wine Daisy at the Dead Rabbit

4/6
Photograph: Filip Wolak

The Dead Rabbit

5/6
Photograph: Daniel Krieger

The Dead Rabbit

6/6
Photograph: Daniel Krieger

The Dead Rabbit

At this time-capsule FiDi nook, you can drink like a boss—Boss Tweed, that is. In a redbrick landmark, Belfast bar vets Sean Muldoon and Jack McGarry (of Northern Ireland’s acclaimed Merchant Hotel) have conjured up a rough-and-tumble 19th-century tavern. And it’s just the kind of saloon that the bare-knuckle Five Points gang the joint’s named after (its emblem was a dead rabbit impaled on a spike) would have frequented.

DRINK THIS: Resurrecting long-forgotten quaffs is nothing new in Gotham, but the Dead Rabbit’s sheer breadth of throwback libations eclipses the competition. Spanning 100-some-odd bishops, fixes, nogs and smashes, the bar squarely hits many of these mid-1800s hallmarks. The Byrrh Wine Daisy ($14), era-appropriate in its china teacup with mustache guard, is particularly well wrought: Puckery rhubarb soda, raspberry eau-de-vie and fresh citrus amp up the fruit-forward Byrrh, while bitter Amaro CiaCiaro and piney angelica tinctures squelch any overt sweetness. Some drinks are less successful in their reincarnations (the Tween Deck is a flat mix of Jamaican rum, Sixpoint cask-conditioned ale, lime sherbet and allspice), but the whopping list holds plenty of sure-footed sips alongside the missteps.

GOOD FOR: A working-class drink—though that working class is now buttoned-down bankers instead of roughneck Irish dockhands. McGarry and Muldoon liberate the cocktail from its blue-blood trappings. The snug, sawdust-strewn first floor is made for pints and whiskey slugs. But the handsome upstairs parlor focuses on potables previously relegated to the upper crust, as neighborhood number-crunchers park themselves on the masculine leather barstools for contrastingly dainty sips.

THE CLINCHER: Looking like something plucked off a cobwebbed library shelf, the bound menu showcases an almost archaeological attention to detail: The origin of each cocktail is dutifully footnoted under its drink name (e.g., the Lawn Sleeves Bishop dates back to Richard Cook’s 1835 guide, Oxford Night Caps). The tome’s pages are filled with maps of the old Financial District, 19th-century illustrations and an essay from author Peter Quinn on the Dead Rabbits gang. It’s a history lesson, but better—you’ve got a serious buzz going.

Venue name: The Dead Rabbit
Contact:
Address: 30 Water St
New York
10004
Cross street: at Broad St
Opening hours: Daily noon–4am
Transport: Subway: N, R to Whitehall St
Price: Average cocktail: $14. AmEx, Disc, MC, V
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Average User Rating

4.3 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:2
  • 4 star:6
  • 3 star:0
  • 2 star:0
  • 1 star:0
LiveReviews|9
1 person listening
Erik A

The drinks are off the radar here. 5 stars doesn't do it justice. Some of the most expertly crafted cocktails I have ever tasted. The night we went it took almost 40 minutes to get a drink due to how long it takes to make each one but it was worth the wait.

Christa Sully
tastemaker

The fact that 7 people (now 8) reviewed this place says enough, but The Dead Rabbit is a truly amazing bar. It's an authentic Irish pub smack dab in the middle of the Financial District. 


It's friendly, welcoming and literally has something for everyone, from their fantastic Irish whiskey collection, a solid selection of beers, wine and the coolest cocktail book you'll ever see (if you haven't heard about it, it's designed like a graphic novel).


There's a reason this place has one Best Cocktail Bar in the World, and the best part is you would never expect it from this place. 

mattscheetz
tastemaker

Fantastic place, yes. Best bar in the world? Granted I haven't been to them all (let me get through Manhattan first), but who knows. The knock of a star is to ease the hype and bring their head back to size. 

BUT...The Dead Rabbit is a great spot that does a lot of things right. The old-school Irish vibe doesn't feel forced (maybe it's because the bartenders are fresh from the homeland), but rather an authentic drinking experience. While you may be tempted to order a beer (this is, after all, a pub), instead opt for one of their "award-winning" cocktails (the quotes are me being bitter...the cocktails are delicious and expertly crafted by people who know their shit backwards).

And make sure you soak it all up properly with some well executed Irish fare. The burger is a solid option, but for the real experience, go for the shepherd's pie or chicken pot pie. 

And don't feel bad about leaving the check to your Wall Street friend who definitely made you meet him down there and definitely can afford it. 

Aaron D

Definitely a great addition to the Financial District, the downstairs bar is always packed (sometimes a little too much so) but it is worth the visit as the crowd is normally good, as is the vibe, and the drinks are amazing!The bar staff know what they’re doing and manage a very busy bar very well!Upstairs is a little more sedate, with small tables and table service, the cocktail list is the same in both bars (I think) but upstairs is the place to be if you’re wanting a quiet intimate drink, downstairs if you’re on more of a night out with friends

David K

I dragged some friends hearing about how a really good drink menu -- ended up getting food and probably had one of the best shepherd's pie I've had in nyc. There's a really great homey feel to this place. Check it out.

christa t

We love this bar/restaurant. Great irish food. Amazing cocktails. Bartenders are world class and friendly. Upstairs level they offer cocktails that are period to a certain time in history. If you are visiting NYC put this place on your list. 

Jaime B

Every time I've gone to Dead Rabbit, it's been a night to remember. The cocktails are so thoughtfully designed and made that you can't go wrong in choosing. And they're potent. Three cocktails at Dead Rabbit will bring you to a level of drunk that you're not accustomed to from drinking at other bars. The food is also amazing, especially considering the teeny tiny kitchen. During my last visit, a friend and I shared steak tartare with a quail egg and a scotch egg. This place is small and special. Save it for a good night.

Amy Cavanaugh

The Dead Rabbit was named World’s Best Bar at the 2015 Tales of the Cocktail, and I think the award is totally deserved. With two levels devoted to expertly made drinks, bargoers have a choice—the more lively taproom on the first floor, where drinks are a little more crowd friendly and include high balls and pop-inns, (old-school boilermakers), and the quieter second floor parlor, best for dates and cozy conversations. The staff is equally friendly and welcoming at both (and the parlor also serves a welcoming cup of punch), as is the attention to detail. The bar stays open till 4am, (and the taproom gets going at 11am), which makes it an ideal stop for the last drink of the night.