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Photograph: Courtesy Jake Giles Netter

Bob The Drag Queen shares her go-to LGBTQ+ spots in NYC

The dynamic drag performer tells Time Out her favorite local spots before the season premiere of "We're Here."

Will Gleason
Written by
Will Gleason

Many people first become acquainted with the hilarious Bob The Drag Queen when she took home the top prize on the eighth season of RuPaul’s Drag Race, but New Yorkers have long been entertained by her quick wit and show-stopping looks at bars and clubs right here in the five boroughs.

This week, the long-time NYC performer is back with season two of her hit reality show We’re Here on HBO Max. Teaming up with fellow Drag Race alums Shangela and Eureka O’Hara, she’ll be helping fledgling performers in small towns as they get ready to put on a glitzy one-night-only drag performance.

“We still have the same purpose but we really got in the groove this season,” Bob the Drag Queen told Time Out on a recent call. “Also, the people whose stories we’re telling just trust us a lot more because they’ve already seen the first season. They know what the show is.”

Bob The Drag Queen
Photograph: Courtesy Jake Giles Netter

One particularly tricky aspect of this season’s production was that it was, like many others, filmed during a global pandemic. That reality is something that’s immediately apparent in the first episode of the season which was initially shut down in the middle of filming back in March 2020.

“It was definitely a different experience, but I think we really met the challenge well,” she says. “I think we were actually able to connect with our drag queens in a closer way. I do feel like we were closer because of it and were able to form a closer bond.”

While this season follows a similar formula as the first one, Bob insists it’s the authenticity of the show that sets it apart as opposed to rewriting some sort of formula. 

“We haven’t broken the ground on something completely brand-new with this show, but it’s a fresh take on what we’re doing. I think what’s better about our show is how relatable it is. It isn’t about how different we are, it’s about how you can relate to people on the show.”

Before you catch the rest of the second season on HBO Max, which premiered last night, you can check out some of Bob the Drag Queen’s favorite LGBTQ+ spots right here in NYC.

An uptown two-in-one

"Suite Bar (992 Amsterdam Ave, Morningside Heights) is one of the only uptown gay bars left. It's where I used to hang out all the time near Columbia. It’s a show bar with a tiny stage at the back of the bar, it’s a little bit of a dive and it’s also connected to a restaurant. So once you’re wasted, you can head over to the restaurant and grab some food on your way home."

A vital drag destination

"Barracuda (275 W. 22nd St, Chelsea) will forever and always be one of my favorite places in the city. It’s one of the places that has kept drag alive. This is the place that really gave me my big break. It’s the place that really put me forward. Some of the best drag in the world has come out of Barracuda. It’s just a truly special place."

A versatile midtown spot

"New World Stages (340 W 50th St, Hell's Kitchen) is a really good place to hang out. Not only is there a lounge there, but there are theaters and they also do nightlife events. It’s really great—not necessarily queer, but it is. It’s an old movie theater turned into a lot of smaller theater spaces."

A sizeable stage

"Industry (355 W 52nd St, Hell's Kitchen) has Queen, one of the best drag shows in the city. I used to work on it every Thursday. It’s so big, you think you're not in New York City. It’s a big massive bar, almost like a club at this point."

A 10th Ave trendsetter

"Hardware (697 Tenth Ave, Hell's Kitchen) is over on 10th Avenue, It’s a little bit off the beaten path. It’s not on the main drag, but I think it was one of the first bars out there that established that whole area on 10th. Now, they’ve really made it part of the journey, it’s great. 

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