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Gurney's Beach Club
Photograph: Courtesy Gurney's Beach Club

The best Montauk bars to party in the Hamptons

When summer rolls around, it's time to turn up the heat and party at the best Montauk bars in the Hamptons

Written by
Alyson Penn
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It's summer in the city, but you just want to GTFO. However, you're not looking for some quaint camping trip upstate or a family-friendly weekend getaway—you want city-level raging with the beach breeze in your hair. Montauk, the surfer-fishermen town set all the way out east in the Hamptons, has become the "it" scene during the summer thanks to its high-low mix of elitist clubs and gritty dives. We've rounded up the best Montauk bars for partying in the Hamptons.

RECOMMENDED: Full guide to the Hamptons, NY

Best Montauk bars

  • Hotels
  • Long Island
  • price 3 of 4

Okay, we know it seems a little douchey placing Gurney's first on this list. After all, during its peak season, you need to have a reservation or be a hotel guest to even step foot on the beach club. But, if you're willing to pinch your nose and swallow the doorman snobbery and $18 cocktails, you'll marvel at the breezy beachside cabanas, nautical-striped outdoor bar and influencer-styled crowd getting tipsy to a live DJ. During peak season, it's peak Montauk.

  • Bars
  • Breweries
  • Long Island
  • price 1 of 4

No doubt you've seen these color-block beer cans around the city. Decorated in bright shades of pink, turquoise and yellow, they excel at projecting summer-in-a-bottle. Well, that good-time vibe (from both outside and inside the can) extends to its red farmhouse brewery two blocks off Montauk's main circle. Order the fruity Watermelon Sessions Ale or the light Summer Ale at the laid-back tasting room and then park yourself at one of the outdoor picnic tables for daytime drinking. 

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  • Restaurants
  • Long Island
  • price 3 of 4

Here's the only advice that really matters for Ruschmeyer's: Get there early. By early, we mean, like 6pm-7pm on a Saturday night. Once the clock strikes 8pm, the queue full of posh but antsy twenty- and thirty-somethings can be upwards of two to three hours long. Nevertheless, there's a reason why every Montauker and his mother wants to come to the outdoor/indoor summer camp of a bar. Firepit? Check. Lawn games? Check. Plenty of seating and a raucus dance floor? Check and check. 

  • Bars
  • Dive bars
  • Long Island
  • price 1 of 4

Not too long ago, Montauk was a quiet fisherman town that hadn't yet been tainted by the bougieness from its Hamptons neighbors. Of course, that's all changed now. But there's one place that still attracts locals (and to them, we apologize for this write-up) with cheap booze, mean mudslides and nautical knick knacks. If you want to kick back in a true fishermen's dive bar, head to the northern end of the town for a taste of Montauck back when.  

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  • Bars
  • Dive bars
  • Long Island
  • price 1 of 4

Sunset views don't get much better (at least on the East Coast) than in the backyard of Montauket. The locals spot gets packed around sunset on weekends, so the crowd can watch the sun dip below Fort Pond Bay while nursing a Montauk Brewing beer. You might initially go for the Insta, but you'll stay for the friendly, small-town feel.

  • Bars
  • Dive bars
  • Long Island
  • price 1 of 4

The Sloppy Tuna is perhaps the beachiest of the beach bars in Montauk, as it's parked practically right on the sand. During the day, you'll find bathing-suit clad imbibers spilling out onto the second floor balcony to soak in the beach views. At night, the dance floor gets started with revelers dancing to throwbacks and top 40s. It's a little grimey, but it's a refreshing break from all the stylish spots vying to be the "scene" of the summer.

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  • Bars
  • Dive bars
  • Long Island
  • price 1 of 4

You may recall Memory Motel from the Rolling Stones song subtly titled, "Memory Motel." Yep, this is the one. And its rockstar legacy makes it the town's premiere last-call place. It's the bar everyone heads to at 3am when the night just doesn't feel over because not enough bad decisions have been made. Memory is that bar, and we're all simultaneously better and worse off for it. 

  • Restaurants
  • Seafood
  • Long Island
  • price 3 of 4

This sun-kissed space might have been inspired by Australia's laid-back Byron Bay, but the elitist 'tude certainly is not. Nevertheless, how can we leave off the most notorious bar in all of Montauk? If you're able to make it past the difficult bouncers (you've gotta know someone or drop major $), you'll feel the sand beneath your toes, take sunset pics over Fort Pond, hear live music and a run into a dizzying roster of celebs and models. 

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  • Restaurants
  • Long Island
  • price 3 of 4

Yes, this is related to the Grey Lady you've ended up at at 2am on the Lower East Side. The fact that the owners took it allll the way east makes sense: The nautical theme and buzzy (but not clubby) scene is a near perfect fit for the party-central seaside town.

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