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Brazen Fox
Photograph: Courtesy Brazen Fox

The 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

By Christina Izzo and Time Out contributors

You’ve planned your Thanksgiving dinner, you’ve ordered one of the best pies in NYC and now for the most important part of your holiday—what bars open on Thanksgiving are you going to frequentto combat the frustrations of an entire day spent with your family. Luckily for you, there are plenty of options, from Irish pubs to football-loving sports bars. Here’s where to drink during Thanksgiving in NYC.

RECOMMENDED: Full guide to Thanksgiving in NYC

Best bars open on Thanksgiving

1. BillyMark’s West

Bars Sports Bars Chelsea

This unfussy bar with gloriously cheap drinks looks like a roadhouse in the rural Midwest; there are posters for obscure shoot-’em-up movies and neon signs touting various brewskies. Patrons include employees from the nearby post office, and more than a few gallerygoers who seem quite happy to have found a joint so decidedly unfashionable.

Photograph: Jonathan Aprea

2. Doc Holliday’s

Bars Dive bars East Village

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 $2, and four bucks will get you a well drink.

Brooklyn Brewhouse
Photograph: Courtesy Brooklyn Brewhouse

3. Brooklyn Brewhouse

Bars Beer bars Downtown Brooklyn

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).

4. Warren 77

Bars Sports Bars Financial District

This hipster sports bar “serves” a number of conflicting constituencies. Caught up in a big game, the after-work schlubs may not even notice the eclectic mishmash of sports memorabilia (including an authentic Wayne Gretzky portrait by Andy Warhol). But the younger group that arrives later is far more focused on drinking (and flirting) than keeping up with the score. The booze speaks to both crowds: Bud Light and imported draft beers for the sports fans, and deadly Maker’s Mark Sazeracs for the rest of us. Still, in the end Warren 77 is too schizophrenic for our taste.

Cronin & Phelan’s
Photograph: Courtesy Yelp/Eric C.

5. Cronin & Phelan’s

Bars Astoria

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.

Irish Haven
Photograph: Courtesy Yelp/Matt H.

6. Irish Haven

Bars Sunset Park

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? The spot was featured in The Departed. So there, wise guy.

Jack Demsey's
Photograph: Mike Skigen

7. Jack Dempsey’s

Bars Pubs Midtown West

Anyone who considers the term tourist to be an epithet had better steer clear of this pub. The location and by-the-book Irish theme attract a Today show crop of out-of-towners. New Yorkers brave enough to overcome their prejudices will find weekend soccer broadcasts, a homey stone fireplace and a wonderful selection of tap beers, including Tetley’s English Ale and creamy Boddington’s.

8. Lexington Brass

Restaurants American Midtown East

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.

Playwright Irish Pub
Photograph: Courtesy Playwright Irish Pub

9. Playwright Irish Pub

Bars Pubs Midtown West

Located in the heart of New York City, Playwright Irish Pub proves not only to be a sports fan's paradise, but also a great venue to hold amazing parties. Whether it be a small gathering or a large dinner party, the Playwright will satisfy. We are also very excited to introduce Sam Byrne as our new head chef. His food and presentation is amazing, and we are proud to have him working for us.The Playwright boasts 2 full bars, a large dining room and a cozy intimate lounge area.

10. Boulton & Watt

Restaurants American East Village

A few years back, 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). In New York, the otherworldly aesthetic has carried through to bar design. At one of the later additions to the gaslight-and-goggles scene, Boulton & Watt, ceiling fans spin via an ornate, belt-operated pulley system. The superlative gastropub plates and remarkably well-balanced drinks have real bona fides.

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