Food & Drink

38 NYC Bars That Are Open on Christmas Day

Published On 12/18/2015 Published On 12/18/2015
Courtesy of Bemelman's Bar (edited)

Whether you got bad gifts, need a break from your weird uncle, or just don’t even celebrate the holiday, there are plenty of reasons to drink on Christmas. So slap on that ugly sweater, grab your stocking-stuffer cash, and get drinking at one of these 38 bars open on Christmas Day.

Ace Bar

Ace Bar

East Village
Let out your familial angst with a game of skee-ball and a tall draft of booze at this always-reliable East Village staple open after 5pm.
 

Sing Sing

East Village
Belt out “All I Want for Christmas” one. More. Tiiiime! at this low-key karaoke bar with $5 brews.
 

The 13th Step

East Village
Before you say anything... does your Christmas need a serious dose of bacon, egg & cheese sliders? Yes, YES IT DOES. Don’t argue.
 

Jimmy's No. 43

East Village
Jimmy's is doing its annual Orphans and Expats holiday lunch from 1-4pm ($25 a plate for three hours of dining), and the bar will be open at night.

Molly's Shebeen

Molly’s Shebeen

Gramercy
Cuddle by the fireplace with a pint -- or 12 -- at this classic-and-cozy Irish pub.
 

Plug Uglies

Gramercy
Huge shuffleboard tables, loads of booze, and zero of your family members make this where you need to be Xmas Day.

Flickr/ataferner

Society Billiards + Bar

Flatiron
Shoot pool, swig martinis, and chow down on tater tots at this TV-studded joint open ‘til 3am or later every damn day of the year.
 

230 Fifth

Flatiron
Enjoy the annual, family-friendly Christmas brunch from 1-9pm at this lower 5th spot with allll the skyline views.

Off the Wagon

Off the Wagon

Greenwich Village
Wash down all that Christmas candy with a pitcher of beer at this reliable (and rowdy!) NYU watering hole open at 8pm.
 

3 Sheets Saloon

Greenwich Village
If Off the Wagon’s too crowded, grab a beer at its sister bar right down the street, also open at 8pm.

Hair of the Dog

Hair of the Dog

Lower East Side
Part old-school pub, part new-school sports bar, this easygoing joint is the perfect place to blow off steam after (barely) surviving another family Christmas.
 

Rochelle's

Lower East Side
Starting at 5pm, this LES fave will have tons of great drink specials, like $3 Solbeso shots, $4 PBRs, and a bucket of six PBRs for $20. It'll also be playing games on the TV, and is totally cool with you ordering your own food in.

P.J. Clarke’s

P.J. Clarke’s

Midtown
Down Manhattans and burgers at this classic Midtown spot with a tolerable degree of Christmas spirit.
 

The Rum House

Midtown
Sneak away from the dinner table and grab a drink at this splashy piano bar with a formidable cocktail list featuring drinks like the Vieux Carre with rye, Cognac, vermouth & bitters.
 

Bobby Van’s

Midtown
Skip the Christmas cooking and enjoy a meal at this classic steakhouse instead with its special prix-fixe Christmas menu for $75/person.
 

The TownHouse Bar

Midtown
This gay piano bar demands you don your gay apparel before fa la la la’ing the day away with tunes and booze. (Seriously -- there’s a dress code.)
 

Hudson Hotel Library

Midtown
Take a lazy stroll through Central Park before posting up at this posh hotel bar with creative drinks like the maple mojito and smoky pear margarita.

The Ginger Man NYC

The Ginger Man

Murray Hill
Escape those incessant questions about your love life/weight/job/everything at this good-time Irish bar open after 4pm on Christmas Day.
 

The Churchill Tavern

Murray Hill
Anglophiles will love this laid-back watering hole with legit English fare like shepherd’s pie and fish & chips.
 

The Black Sheep

Murray Hill
Good food, good drinks, and cheap prices.
 

Whiskey Rebel

Murray Hill
Comfy sofas, hand-painted murals, and an ample selection of beer.

Flickr/Sean Davis

Fanelli Cafe

Soho
There’s no day of the year this place isn’t open, so head on over Xmas Day for a quick bite, a brew, and zero crazy aunts.

Flickr/rocketlass

Bemelmans Bar

Upper East Side
Class up your Christmas at this glitzy Art Deco bar nestled inside The Carlyle hotel.
 

Dorrian’s

Upper East Side
Skip the Christmas cheer and get your frat on instead at this UES mainstay open after 5pm.
 

Seamstress

Upper East Side
One of the best new bars of the year will be open from 7pm-2am on Christmas, with an "amaro Christmas special” the entire night... meaning, an amaro open bar... all night long...
 

Lexington Bar and Books

Upper East Side
Blow through some of that Christmas cash at this swanky smoking bar with a generous selection of cocktails and whiskey.
 

Cascabel Taqueria

Upper East Side
Margaritas and tacos are probably the greatest Christmas ham-and-eggnog alternative. The West Side location will also be open!

Flickr/Traveling Librarian

The Gin Mill

Upper West Side
Beer pong on Christmas? This laid-back sports bar with 28 flat-screen TVs has you covered.
 

Dublin House

Upper West Side
A UWS mainstay since the 1920s (and an iconic speakeasy during Prohibition!), this classic Irish bar is the perfect escape from your super-annoying family.
 

The Stumble Inn

Upper West Side
Slug some draft brews and order up one of the insane STUFFED BURGERS (#dreamscometrue) at this reliable UES sports bar open after 7pm.
 

Jake’s Dilemma

Upper West Side
With 14 beers on tap and over 50 bottled brews to choose from, Christmas spirit just took on a whole new meaning -- open after 7pm!

Drew Swantak/Thrillist

Blind Tiger

West Village
It’s one of the best beer bars in NYC, so be sure to pop in for an Xmas draft after 5pm.
 

Down the Hatch

West Village
If spiraled ham is just a little too classy for your Christmas tastes, Hatch’s deep-fried mac & cheese and atomic wings are your antidote anytime after 6pm.
 

Fiddlesticks

West Village
Dependable Irish eats, a bro-y atmosphere, and haphazardly strung Xmas lights make Fiddlesticks the perfect dive bar to post up at on Christmas.
 

The Duplex

West Village
Part piano bar, part cabaret theater, this West Village mainstay is open 365 days a year.
 

Johnny’s Bar

West Village
Enjoy daily shot specials like the Dirty Girl Scout (vodka, crème de menthe, coffee liqueur, and Irish cream) at this jukebox-adorned haunt open from noon-4am.

The Richardson

Turkey’s Nest

Williamsburg
If your idea of Christmas is chugging cheap beer out of a Styrofoam cup, this place is for you.
 

The Richardson

Williamsburg
Specialty cocktails and a speakeasy vibe make this East Williamsburg bar the perfect place to cap off your Christmas.

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Christine Fischer is a freelance writer for Thrillist. She will be drinking at ALL of these bars on Christmas. Follow her on Facebook and Instagram.

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1. Ace Bar 531 E 5th St, New York, NY 10009 (East Village)

Ace Bar has been serving up cheap drinks to East Village locals since 1992 and is known for its laid-back atmosphere and excellent arcade game collection. The bar stretches two huge rooms and offers plenty of seating, as well as two pool tables, two dart boards, pinball, Big Buck Hunter, and Skee-Ball. It also has a special projection TV system for games and 12 beers on tap.

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2. Sing Sing Karaoke 9 Saint Marks Pl, New York, NY 10003 (East Village)

Sing Sing is the place on St. Marks to get your karaoke fix taken care of. Head there late, with a reserved room, and dance & sing (... sing) the night away.

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3. The 13th Step 149 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10003 (East Village)

If you’re in the East Village and in need of a straightforward sports bar, go to The 13th Step. The sprawling space features more than 30 flat screen TVs, and it’s always packed to capacity, even if there’s nothing to watch. The beer menu is simple (think Budweiser, Coors, and Rolling Rock), and there’s a hefty selection of over-the-top bar food like chili nachos, a pizza burger, and buffalo chicken sliders.

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4. Jimmy's No. 43 43 E 7th St, New York, NY 10003 (East Village)

A downstairs joint in one of the most bar-heavy neighborhoods in the whole country, Jimmy's No. 43 has a perfectly sized and approachable craft beer selection without the pretense of being too exclusive. The staff insist that you sample a sip of beer first before committing, and the cozy environment and upscale food cap it off to make Jimmy’s a neighborhood mainstay. It differentiates itself from other beer bars with an Asian-fusion menu featuring Filipino-inspired dishes like chicken wings adobo and pork belly tacos.

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5. Society Billiards + Bar 10 E 21st St, New York, NY 10010 (Flatiron)

This upscale sports bar, which is even open on Christmas Day, is the place to go for bar games. Pool tables, ping pong matches, and dart boards abound.

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6. 230 Fifth 230 5th Ave, New York, NY 10010 (Flatiron)

This vast, greenery-lined rooftop bar is New York's largest outdoor rooftop garden, filled with everything from one-of-a-kind furniture pieces to palm tress. While it's perfect for outdoor drinking in the summer for obvious reasons, it's also open year-round thanks to heat lamps and inflatable igloos, making winter rooftop drinking just as easy.

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7. Molly's Shebeen 287 3rd Ave, New York, NY 10010 (Gramercy)

Molly's Shebeen in Murray Hill is an old school NYC Irish dive, through and through. The well worn space (complete with sawdust on the floor) has remained a favorite of locals and regulars since opening its doors in 1960. An extensive beer selection is obviously where Molly's shines -- it's a solid spot to grab a pint just based off atmosphere alone, not to mention the mile long menu of English and Irish drafts -- but if you're looking for a seriously satisfying burger, Molly's comes through on that front, as well. The cheeseburgers, piled high with crispy onion rings and all the fixings are what basic bar burgers aspire to be.

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8. Plug Uglies 256 Third Ave, New York, NY 10010 (Gramercy)

Plug Uglies is a Gramercy area sports bar and dive. Purportedly named after an infamous Irish gang that ruled the streets of NYC in the 1800s, this cavernous space is well-liked by NYC locals (and cops) for its no-nonsense, no BS approach to boozing. Drinks are cheap, pours are generous, and the vibe is wholly unpretentious. Shuffleboard, pool, and trivia, are what's on the menu besides standard-issue draft brews (Guinness, Bud, Miller, et al).

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9. Off The Wagon Bar & Grill 109 Macdougal St, New York, NY 10012 (Greenwich Village)

Sometimes things get rowdy at this Washington Sq. dive bar, but that's why you came there, right? Strong drinks and a lively crowd are what make Off the Wagon worth going to.

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10. 3 Sheets Saloon 134 W 3rd St, New York, NY 10012

Beer, bar food, and an army of TVs to watch the game on.

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11. Hair of the Dog 168 Orchard St, New York, NY 10002 (Lower East Side)

Hair of the Dog is a sports bar with 25 flatscreens, three projectors, 14 taps and a nice selection of canned suds, and daily specials that are hard to beat (half-off the whole bar Mon-Sat 'til 8pm). The food is greasy and ideal to soak up all that alcohol you'll be ingesting.

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12. Leave Rochelle Out of It 205 Chrystie St, New York, NY 10002 (Lower East Side)

This bodega-turned-bar offers over 150 types of whiskey, no-nonsense cocktails, and above-average bar food. It's decorated with subway tiles and funky mirrors, and you can expect loud music and movies playing from the TV screens. The best part? The sign in the bathroom politely asking you to fornicate somewhere other than the restroom...

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13. P.J. Clarke's 915 3rd Ave, New York, NY 10022 (Midtown)

A New York institution, P.J. Clarke's has delivered on the fancy cheeseburger promise since 1884. And while Midtown in the new millennia no longer projects late-20th century old money glam, the venue continues to maintain a setting of demure class. Come for the bacon cheeseburgers, stay for the exemplary cocktails.

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14. The Rum House 228 W 47th St, New York, NY 10036 (Midtown West)

A piano, a multi-lantern chandelier, and red leather banquettes set the tone for this classic cocktail joint located in the Theater District. Serving up masterful, brag-worthy takes on your liquor go-to's, The Rum House is a cocktail purveyor through and through. Food isn't a focus here, so take your hunger to Hell's Kitchen and come back here for a most-sophisticated nightcap.

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15. Bobby Van's 135 W 50th St, New York, NY 10020 (Midtown)

Sidle up to the bar at this haven for steaks, and pour strong martinis down your mouth and/or shirt all day.

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16. Townhouse 236 E 58th St, New York, NY 10022 (Midtown)

This gay cocktail lounge, with 3 bars and a piano room, caters to a high-end clientele.

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17. The Library at Hudson Hotel 356 W 58th St, New York, NY 10019 (Midtown East)

Page through your tome with a Sazerac in hand and make doe eyes at whatever unsuspecting scholars strike your fancy at the Hudson Hotel's swanky and discreet Library Bar.

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18. The Ginger Man 11 E 36th St, New York, NY 10016 (Midtown)

The Ginger Man is a beer-lover's haven. Located near Herald Square (which may be the best or worst thing about it for you), this den dedicated to all things craft beer is always open, friendly, and welcoming. Looking for something besides a Bud but not sure where to turn? Ginger Man's knowledgable bar staff will help you select the perfect beer for your complex (or not so much) palate.

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19. The Churchill Tavern 45 E 28th St, New York, NY 10016 (Murray Hill)

The Churchill Tavern is bi-level watering hole with a British theme (hence the name). Big plus? They're fully stocked on Christmas day during their two dinner sessions at 12:00 and 4:00pm.

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20. The Black Sheep 583 3rd Ave, New York, NY 10016 (Murray Hill)

There are worse ways to spend the night than eating a Black Sheep Super Burger and tossing back beers at this welcoming Irish pub.

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21. Whiskey Rebel 129 Lexington Ave, New York, NY 10016 (Murray Hill)

This Murray Hill bar and pub is known for their whiskey (natch) and hard partying attitude-- $5 shots offered seven nights a week will do that to you.

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22. Fanelli Cafe 94 Prince St, New York, NY 10012 (Soho)

Dim with dingy charm and the occasional dog panting in the window, you’d never know you were in Soho while in Fanelli's, home of the city’s greatest old-school burgers (the spot's been around since 1847!). You've got a choice between beef and bison, but you should opt for the rich and thick char-grilled bison on an onion roll. Add cheese or bacon if you please, but there’s nothing wrong with just a regular burger here (alongside a pint, of course).

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23. Bemelmans Bar 35 E 76th St, New York, NY 10021 (Upper East Side)

If it weren’t for all the alcohol, you could mistake Bemelmans for the world’s most lavish nursery. That’s because the walls and lampshades are covered with whimsical illustrations from Ludwig Bemelmans, the man behind Madeline. But don’t come here with your kids on a Sunday afternoon; instead, come on Friday, and grab a table on the floor or, if you can, a spot in one of the rich chocolate-brown banquets around the perimeter of the room and listen to live jazz and piano in the evenings. There’s a cover charge past 9pm on Sunday and Monday and 9:30pm Tuesday-Saturday, so be sure to get there early for a first-come-first-serve spot. The menu is all class, from fine wines to cocktails like the pisco sour and top-notch martinis. While you sip, tilt your head back to catch a glimpse of the 24-karat gold leaf-covered ceiling.

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24. Dorrian's Red Hand 1616 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10028 (Upper East Side)

Open since 1960, Dorrian’s is kind of like the Upper East Side’s very own Cheers. Its draft beers and well-priced cocktails are what neighborhood bars are made of, and the kitchen serves classic American comfort food like bacon cheeseburgers, club sandwiches, and mozzarella sticks until midnight.

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25. Seamstress 339 East 75th Street, New York, NY 10021 (Upper East Side)

Created by the team behind nearby bar The Girloy (Josh Mazza and Steve Laycock), Pamela Wiznitzer of the Dead Rabbit, and Will Horowitz of Ducks Eatery, Seamstress focuses on All-American food and drink, including a bar menu split into six distinct sections -- fresh, spirit forward, low proof, elaborate, nonalcoholic (?), and large format (!) -- as well as a section on the back dedicated to 50 cocktail classics from the 50 states. Food is pub-grub taken to the next level, so a smoked mutton burger with triple cream cheese on brioche, and a braised pork shank with dry tomato, fermented black bean, and spruce.

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26. Lexington Bar & Books 1020 Lexington Ave, New York, NY 10021 (Upper East Side)

Lexington Bar & Books is a great place to light up some stoagies with the guys, indulge in an extensive whiskey list, and converse with a unique crowd.

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27. Cascabel Taqueria 1556 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10028 (Upper East Side)

There's something so undeniably satisfying about eating Mexican food when you've already had a few, so get your drink and your eat on at this colorful, friendly Upper East Side taqueria with some of the best margs' and queso in town.

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28. The Gin Mill 442 Amsterdam Ave, New York, NY 10024 (Upper West Side)

This British style pub in the UWS serves not only gin, but beer, wine, and whiskey a plenty. Shimmy up to the oak bar and order whichever floats your boat while you watch the game on wall to wall TVs.

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29. Dublin House 225 W 79th St, New York, NY 10024 (Upper West Side)

Looking for a properly poured Guinness on the UWS, then stop in at the Dublin House for a fresh pint.

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30. The Stumble Inn 1454 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10021 (Upper East Side)

This UES sports bar has a special that lasts from 11:30am-7pm every day except Sunday, when they start at 12pm. You can grab a bunch of beers for $2.50 and move on, or hang here for most of the day. Either way: success.

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31. Jake's Dilemma 430 Amsterdam Ave, New York, NY 10024 (West Village)

Beer pong, pool, and foosball tables, plus 50 bottled beers from across America, fill this enormous space because drinking games, bro-ing out, and America, generally, are mutually inclusive.

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32. The Blind Tiger 281 Bleecker St, New York, NY 10014 (West Village)

Arguably the epitome of a New York City craft beer bar and a true pioneer in the NYC craft scene, Blind Tiger’s been doling out a fine selection of the top tier libations since it opened in 1995. It’s the go-to spot to meet folks from your favorite breweries who happen to be swinging through town, and the tap takeovers are legendary to say the least. Sip from 28 taps, two casks and a staggering list of microbrew bottles.

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33. Down the Hatch 179 W 4th St, New York, NY 10014 (West Village)

This subterranean space specializes in super-strong drink mixes that result in raucous times for all who enter.

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34. Fiddlesticks 56 Greenwich Ave, New York, NY 10011 (West Village)

Sometime when you want to get a little rowdy, this is a great spot to do just that. Curry fries, burgers, and a handy happy hour will aid you on your journey. We think that Fiddlesticks is the best Irish bar in New York, and you should make sure to stop by when you are in the area.

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35. The Duplex 61 Christopher St, New York, NY 10014 (West Village)

Looking for drinks and a show? Come to the Duplex, a performing arts complex tucked into charming Christopher St. Cabaret rules at the piano bar, while you can catch drag and comedy downstairs.

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36. Johnny's Bar 90 Greenwich Ave, New York, NY 10011 (West Village)

A colorful, lively tavern and taproom, Johnny's in the West Village is a neighborhood dive, through and through. No matter the day of the week, neighborhood barflies zip into this cozy counter space (the bar is roughly the size of a subway car) and knock a few back after hours. The collage-like aesthetic of the narrow, brick-walled interior space only adds to its friendly and intimate feel.

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37. The Turkey's Nest 94 Bedford Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11249

Right across from McCarren Park, Turkey's Nest is a dive bar in Williamsburg known for serving drinks in huge styrofoam cups. It has all the fixins of an actual dive: cheap drinks, pool tables, a few TVs, and a jukebox.

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38. The Richardson 451 Graham Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11222 (Greenpoint)

Greenpoint's The Richardson does expert mixology without a drop of pretension in an old-school tavern space decked out in dark woods and vintage wallpaper. Don't expect any speakeasy fuss: this bar surpasses its sometimes cheesy Prohibition-style peers in that respect, relying on well-made classics (from old fashionds to French 75s) rather than overwrought atmospherics. A solid menu of charcuterie and American platters (will it be pretzels, deviled eggs, and cheese or sardines, saltines, and creme fraiche?) and hearty pub plates can be had at any of the tables lining the barrel-strewn space, with your choice of 14 German and American craft beers on tap.

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