Don’t let Old Man Winter keep you from exploring Gotham! We get it: You have Netflix, a fridge full of beer and a heated blanket that’s calling your name—but, c’mon, that’s lame. There are far too many places where you can be cozy as f*ck without sacrificing the fun. From some of the best bars to dine-in movie theaters and cafes with some of the best hot chocolate you’ve ever had, we’ve rounded up our favorite joints to snuggle up inside. Summon your tribe and get ready to enjoy a cozy night out!
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Best places to be cozy as f*ck
Just because it’s winter doesn’t mean you need to completely hibernate. While many city bars provide heat lamps on their rooftops and patios in the cold months, there’s something about a real campfire that just screams “cozy.” Summertime rooftop-bar staple Gallow Green has been transformed into the Lodge (a cabin-themed hideaway), complete with a canoe seating area, blankets and a fire pit. And just a borough away, the less frilly but equally lively Hot Bird in Clinton Hill, Brooklyn, has a fire pit crackling too. Between that and your liquor jacket, you’ll have no problem staying warm./p>
It’s been a long but worthwhile wait for Austin’s famed Alamo Drafthouse to open its first NYC location in Downtown Brooklyn. The multiplex has wait service during each showing, so you can order bowls of popcorn bigger than your head, killer nachos and boozy milk shakes right to your plush seat. And, since it’s winter, you won’t feel guilty about letting a balmy, sunny day go to waste by gorging on treats and watching flicks in a cozy theater. Catch the latest Hollywood and art-house faves or one of the weekly film series such as the horror-focused Terror Tuesday or the oddities-highlighting Weird Wednesday. (And don’t forget Alamo’s strict no-talking-or-texting policy.)
When you hear the word “cozy,” what’s the first beverage that comes to mind? A toasty mug filled to the brim with hot chocolate! To no one’s surprise, the city’s reigning king of the cocoa bean, Jacques Torres, whips up one of the best in town. The secret behind the velvety, rich concoction is a mixture of 60 to 70 percent dark chocolate, milk powder and corn starch.
In New York City, you can still drink on a rooftop and be cozy as f*ck thanks to 230 Fifth’s rooftop igloos! On the partially heated top deck, the see-through PVC igloos can hold up to eight people and keep out the chill while you enjoy skyline views and seasonal quaffs like spiced whiskey martinis and rum-spiked hot apple cider.
Santa knows the deal—up on a rooftop is the place to be this winter. At New York’s highest rooftop bar, Bar 54 at the Hyatt Centric Times Square, you can hang out in comfy igloo-like bubbles. If you’re determined to partake in outdoor drinking even during below-freezing temps, a reservation isn’t required to visit, though you can reserve a private table inside one if you’d like. You’ll have access to the bar’s full menu of food and house-made cocktails, and you get stunning views of the Chrysler Building and Manhattan.
Venue says Bar 54’s new Greatest Hits menu celebrates 5 years of cocktails at the tallest rooftop bar in Times Square!
Even though the holiday season is over, the cheers live on at The Standard East Village’s winter garden. Outside on the patio, there are five alpine yurts (a.k.a. cozy, makeshift tents) with tiny portable fireplaces and vintage fur coats to wear inside. However, think more Switzerland than Siberia. To book a yurt, one needs to order a fondue feast for 8 to 10 people at $60 per head. The meal includes a choice of sausage or veggie fondue, a salad and apple strudel. The drink package is an additional $32 per person, which includes a pot of hot cider or mulled red wine, as well as wine carafes and Aquavit shots.
This winter, The Knickerbocker hotel has transformed its St. Cloud rooftop bar and lounge into a chic and plush Alpine ski lodge, which is decked out with faux-fur blankets and rugs as well as fake pine trees. There’s also a fireplace, but we think the cold-weather-inspired cocktails will warm you up even more. The drink menu, created by Eben Klemm, includes crowd-favorites such as mulled wine and sips like the Knickerbutter, a warm, buttered apple cider drink. And chef Christopher Engel cooks up tasty winter fare to match, such as fried Camembert with lingonberry jam and house made pork sausage served with crispy onions and friese.
You don’t have to plan an expensive winter getaway to find a snuggly hideout outside of the city. Instead, head to this Boerum Hill bar that looks like a cozy cabin in the woods. Inside the Smith Street watering hole, with its walls made of logs and tree trunk stoles, you can relax and unwind by cozying up to the fireplace with some s’mores and playing classic board games like Jenga and Connect 4 while sipping s’more martinis.
Photograph: Courtesy CC/Flickr/Kevin Smith