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Photograph: Mike Skigen

The 12 best bars open on Thanksgiving in NYC

Bars open on Thanksgiving are a godsend for New Yorkers looking to offset the family holiday with booze

Edited by
Will Gleason
Written by
Victoria Marin
&
Christina Izzo
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You’ve planned your Thanksgiving dinner, you’ve ordered one of the best pies in NYC and now it’s time to figure out where you’re going to have a couple drinks to escape after an entire day spent with your family. Luckily for you, there are plenty of options, from Irish pubs to sports bars to classy cocktail hideaways. Here’s where to drink on Thanksgiving Day in NYC.

RECOMMENDED: Full guide to Thanksgiving in NYC

Best bars open on Thanksgiving

  • Bars
  • Dive bars
  • East Village
  • price 1 of 4

Okay, enough with the fancy-schmancy drinks and the freakin’ tapas. Can’t a person find a regular bar in the East Village anymore? Thank God there’s still Doc Holliday’s, where bartending gals coax shot after shot down the throats of gullible guys, canned Pabst is $3, and five bucks will get you a well drink.

Rolf’s Restaurant
  • Restaurants
  • Austrian
  • Gramercy
  • price 2 of 4

The infamous Rolf’s, where Christmas is celebrated in a giant way all year round, is the perfect place to kick off the holiday season. While the food isn’t much to write home about, the cocktails are fun and festive – go for the spiked warm apple cider or the Christmas smoothie (Bailey’s vanilla cinnamon with a splash of Goldschlager).

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  • Bars
  • Beer bars
  • Downtown Brooklyn
  • price 2 of 4

Barclays Center sports fans can pregame at this tavern, featuring 14 craft drafts and a dozen flatscreens. From brother-beer-buff team Brendan and Sean Straw (Astoria Brewhouse), the granite-topped bar features suds like Huyghe's Delirium, Speakeasy Prohibition Ale and Goose Island IPA on tap, along with more than 50 brews by the bottle. Nab a white-leather barstool for booze-soaking grub like hickory-smoked BBQ ribs, pulled pork sliders and game-ready app "towers" (wings, lobster rolls, calamari).

  • Bars
  • Long Island City

This small but lively Irish pub in Queens is perfect for locals who opt to stay close to home for the holiday. Go with a small group and settle in for a night of easy drinking and chit chat. It’s interiors aren’t much for Instagram, but it feels homey and welcoming nonetheless.

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  • Bars
  • Astoria
  • price 2 of 4

While reserving two lines for standards like Bud and Coors, this Astoria watering hole has ten rotating craft brews on tap. Homestyle Emerald Isle classics like shepherd's pie fill the menu, but regulars know to order Grandma Peacock's famous potato salad, alongside a hefty burger. Sixteen flatscreens broadcast NFL and soccer games in season, while a 40-seat back garden—covered and closed in the winter—is a suitable place for taking a breather if your team fumbles. Knickknacks like goblets and wood carvings tout the pub's Irish heritage.

  • Bars
  • Sunset Park
  • price 2 of 4

This legit, no-frills Irish pub in Sunset Park is refreshingly old Brooklyn and has kept many of its neighborhood regulars for decades. Check out the walls plastered with pictures of ’em, pick a song from the jukebox, and order yourself a Guinness. Need another draw? They offer no-cost prepared meals on Thanksgiving Day (first come, first served) and they’re open from 8am to 4am that day.

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  • Bars
  • Pubs
  • Midtown West
  • price 2 of 4

Seven taps dispense local wines and Sixpoint beers at this glossy black-and-gold bar. Early risers can grab Stumptown coffee and eggs Benedict and buttermilk corn pancakes, while evening diners can choose from raw-bar platters, pastas, roasted chicken with okra stew and a marjoram jus, and steamed mussels and frites. The gorgeous brass-accented space features a white marble floor, tufted light-brown banquettes and pendant lights.

Lexington Brass
  • Restaurants
  • American
  • Midtown East
  • price 4 of 4

The team behind Abe & Arthur's turns to seasonal fare with this breakfast-to-dinner American bistro. Seven taps dispense local wines and Sixpoint beers at the glossy black-and-gold bar. Early risers can grab Stumptown coffee and breakfast plates, like eggs Benedict and buttermilk corn pancakes, while evening diners can choose from raw-bar platters, pastas and mains, including roasted chicken with okra stew and a marjoram jus, and steamed mussels and frites. The brass-accented room features a white marble floor, tufted light-brown banquettes and pendant lights.

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  • Restaurants
  • American
  • East Village
  • price 2 of 4

The fever for steampunk—a sci-fi fantasy mash-up of Victorian costumes and steam-powered gadgetry—has influenced everything from cinema (Oz the Great and Powerful) to fashion (Alexander McQueen). The otherworldly aesthetic has carried through to this East Village gastropub’s bar design, where the ceiling fans spin via an ornate, belt-operated pulley system.

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  • Bars
  • Sports Bars
  • Park Slope
  • price 1 of 4

As at many dives in Brooklyn, the older working-class patrons have been mostly replaced by young neighborhood newcomers. Not here. Sports trophies still line the wall and a game is usually on the tube, but the punk-heavy jukebox and central location fuel a certain diversity. Certainly, everyone can appreciate the mellow, unobtrusive service that has kept Smith’s open since 1931.

Staying in town for Turkey Day?

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