Westlight

Bars, Hotel bars Greenpoint
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 (Photograph: Paul Wagtouicz)
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Photograph: Paul Wagtouicz

Westlight

 (Photograph: Paul Wagtouicz)
2/8
Photograph: Paul Wagtouicz

Westlight

 (Photograph: Paul Wagtouicz)
3/8
Photograph: Paul Wagtouicz

Westlight

Westlight (Photograph: Paul Wagtouicz)
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Photograph: Paul Wagtouicz

New Kind of Kick at Westlight

 (Photograph: Paul Wagtouicz)
5/8
Photograph: Paul Wagtouicz

The College Fund at Westlight

 (Photograph: Paul Wagtouicz)
6/8
Photograph: Paul Wagtouicz

The Crusher at Westlight

 (Photograph: Paul Wagtouicz)
7/8
Photograph: Paul Wagtouicz

Potato skins at Westlight

 (Photograph: Paul Wagtouicz)
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Photograph: Paul Wagtouicz

Octopus skewers at Westlight

The William Vale Hotel came out of the gate hot with culinary clout: The team behind the Williamsburg hotel’s food-and-drink programs—including Airstream burger joint Mister Dips and the soon-to-open Southern Italian dining room Leuca—is none other than NoHo Hospitality heavy hitters Andrew Carmellini, Josh Pickard and Luke Ostrom (Lafayette, the Dutch, Locanda Verde). But a venture across the river wasn’t the only first for the trio—at the hotel, they also debuted their first-ever rooftop bar, Westlight, a stylish glass box capping the neighborhood’s tallest skyscraper. Take the dedicated elevator 22 stories up to the industrial yet swank space—set with black-and-white tiled floors, bright globe lights and a beamed ceiling—to experience a hotel rooftop bar that has all the goods to be a standalone New York cocktail den.

ORDER THIS: Well-balanced cocktails from Anne Robinson (Evening Bar, PDT) come in two forms: classics (El Diablo, Negroni Sbagliato) and originals. The latter category is where Robinson flexes her creative muscles, with playful concoctions like the fruit-forward, tiki-lite Sling Sling ($16), which tames the sugar of kirschwasser brandy, Cherry Heering and pineapple and lime juices with bitter Aperol and floral hibiscus, and the College Fund ($14), the liquid love child of an egg cream and hard root beer. A trio of rums—Black Strap, Banks Golden Age and Smith & Cross—echo the warm spice and nuttiness of Boylan soda, softened with a froth of cream.

GOOD FOR: Taking in the best views this side of the East River. Westlight is located sixteen stories higher than the nearby rooftop bar Ides at the Wythe Hotel and offers sweeping views of three boroughs (Brooklyn, Queens and Manhattan). A wraparound terrace—encased with a plexiglass railing and dotted with bright-yellow viewfinders for sky-high people-watching—is fixed with lounge chairs for warmer weather, but when the chill sets in, the best seats in the house are the low-slung leather couches and velvet banquettes set directly in front of the floor-to-ceiling windows. Sit back and enjoy the show below.

THE CLINCHER: Unsurprisingly, the food is even better than the drinks. Carmellini and executive chef Anthony Ricco (Spice Market) took cues from global street foods for the small-plates menu: Octopus skewers are generously meaty enough to withstand a bold seasoning of rocoto chili ($15), and crispy potato skins are rendered as little yuzu-hollandaise–sauced, caviar-crowned spuds that are a little too easy to pop straight in your mouth; you’ll wish you got more than six for $18. More filling is a dry-aged burger ($17) capped with a savory swath of mushrooms and onion jam. It’s a tad messy, but hey, nobody can judge you all the way up here.

By: Christina Izzo

Posted:

Venue name: Westlight
Contact:
Address: 111 N 12th St
Brooklyn
11249
Cross street: between Berry St and Wythe Ave
Opening hours: Mon–Wed, Sun 4pm–midnight; Thu–Sat 4pm–2am
Price: Average cocktail: $15
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tastemaker

This is such a wonderful rooftop. Vivid, crowded, stylish and very sophisticated. On my recent visit to The William Vale Hotel I encountered Jason Biggs from American Pie along with his wife sipping on some cocktails, they were also indulging on some Du's Donuts from the downstairs shop while enjoying the nice summer breeze. The interior lounge is richly arranged and the bar space makes cocktail ordering the primary activity while at the rooftop. Elegant restrooms with just the perfect amount of lighting make your makeup touch up routine a very pleasant mini trip. The upper most terrace features a private space for weddings and special events. I loved my cocktail which was served in a very cool tiki bar tall glass. This is a wonderful spot to bring your significant other to celebrate anniversaries, or gather with friends for an unforgettable birthday celebration. This is the latest in terms of modern rooftop bars overlooking the full NYC skyline. Highly recommend visiting them. You won't regret it/ you will be so happy you made it out there.  

tastemaker

Not just a great hotel bar with a view, but one of the best views in a rooftop bar anywhere in the city. (You can't see all of the Manhattan skyline when you're in Manhattan, but you can from Brooklyn.) There is a dedicated elevator in the hotel lobby, but reservations are probably still a good idea if you don't want to wait, and want a seat. Otherwise, this place has a modern, glass-everywhere aesthetic, with good service and a large selection of spirits, cocktails, and assorted bites. The views really cannot be overstated, and there's a wrap around terrace with some tables as well (even during the winter, some tried to brave the elements for the better view). Great location, tallest building in the area, and a solid rooftop bar. Prices reflect this, but it's pretty much worth it.

tastemaker

The William Vale reminds me of being in Manhattan, with one exception - you get to actually look out onto the most perfect view of the Skyline while you're inside. Can't beat that. The cocktails here are pricey but for the swanky, classy environment, the price point is worth it. You can't smoke on the roof, which is odd, but the views are literally breathtaking. The food here is good as well. I'm sure it will get more crowded in the summer, but on a Saturday night in fall the crowd was fairly tame - though very attractive. I love this place!