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Top New York Happy Hour Spots

Home > New York > Bars | Fun Things To Do
by Jessica Mousseau (subscribe)
Jessica Mousseau is a copywriter & copy editor from the United States. Her work can be viewed at:
Published June 1st 2011
For many people, happy hour means trying to fight your way through a crowd of people trying to get reduced-priced drinks and a free buffet, only to find that only certain drinks are reduced price and the buffet is very limited in the choices you have. If this is your dilemma, think outside the usual bars and try one of these places for a truly different happy hour experience.

Zarela, 953 2nd Avenue

This is an authentic Mexican restaurant created by Zarela Martinez. Happy hour here is more than sharing a few drinks and maybe some of the best Mexican food in New York City, but it's also a chance for you to share in Zarela's love for his native country.

Besides offering delicious Mexican foods and a variety of drinks to complement the dishes, Zarela also has a line of jewelry that signifies his love for Oaxaca, which is located deep in the country of Mexico. Further, Zarela offers new dishes frequently, so you never know from one visit to the next what new delights await you.

Ear Inn, 326 Spring Street

When you enter the Ear Inn, you are actually inside a designated Landmark of the City of New York. Further, the building, which just happens to be the James Brown House of 1817, is on the National Register of Historic Buildings of the U. S. Department of the Interior. How many historic buildings do you know of that will let you hoist a pint or a glass during one of the best happy hours in New York City?

The House has a colorful history, including its past as a purveyor of corn whiskey to thirsty sailors who were visiting New York City, as well as it's tenure as a speakeasy during Prohibition. Today it is known as one of the finest places to meet with friends for happy hour. Just watch out for ghosts, and if you should happen to see one, please inform the staff. It may be "Mickey," a sailor who is said to be still waiting for the clipper ship that he was to sail out of New York Harbor on.

The Ginger Man, 11 East 36th Place

This different place to spend a New York happy hour gets its name from the novel by J. P. Donleavy. The book was an extremely racy (for 1955, at least) novel depicting different misadventures of an American living in Dublin, Ireland, at the end of World War II.

Originally, The Ginger Man actually got its start in Houston, Texas. However, as the bar's popularity increased, The Ginger Man franchise spread to Dallas, Austin, and, in 1996, finally made its debut in New York City. Since that time, it has become one of the most popular bars in NYC, with seventy different beers on tap, and 160 bottled brands available.

Tillman's, 165 West 26th Street

This bar is billed as a "soul food" establishment, but it's much more than that. Its varied menu includes such things as hearts of palm salad as well as barbecue and other traditional "soul food" dishes, along with those from other countries and cultures.

Depending on which night you go for happy hour, you'll be entertained by live performers or by a DJ who knows how to keep the music spinning. Either way, you'll be assured of a very different happy hour than you'd fine elsewhere in NYC.

Naples 45 Ristorante y Pizzeria, MetLife Building, E. 45th Street

During the warmer months, enjoy your happy hour outdoors; during the winter months, enjoy the warmth created not only by the heating system but by the brick ovens and, of course, the people who flock to this award-winning ("La Vera Pizza Napolitano"- it's only one of two restaurants to hold this award in New York City).

Enjoy brick-oven and wood-oven cooked pizzas, made with traditional Neapolitan ingredients along with your drinks during happy hour. You just might be tempted to stay for dinner.
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Why? Because happy hour is a big part of New York culture
When: 3-7pm
Where: All over New York City
Cost: Drink and food specials
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