Food & Drink
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The Best Waterfront Bars in NYC

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Warm weather is here, and that means one thing and one thing only: you need to be drinking, and you need to be doing it at a waterfront bar. So here’s every single spot you can catch the breeze and a brew in NYC -- sunglasses required.

Upper West Side

Boat Basin Café
Hudson River at W 79th St
Perhaps the ultimate NYC waterfront spot, Boat Basin features casual food, buckets of beer, and a grotto-like interior for comfortable indoor-outdoor drinking on even the hottest summer days.
 
Pier i Café
500 W 70th St
This casual café along Riverside Park South is canopied with umbrellas for perfectly shaded outdoor drinking, plus we’re suckers for its Blue Margarita made with fresh blueberry lemonade.

Chelsea

The Frying Pan
Pier 66 at W 26th St
Whether you love to hate it or love to love it, this floating frat bar is still the king of waterfront boozing.
 

Murray Hill

Riverpark
450 E 29th St
This Tom Colicchio restaurant may be more fancy eatery than bar, but with a drink menu that includes jalapeño-pineapple margaritas and prime East River views, we don’t think you’ll mind.
 
The Water Club
East River at 30th St
The name says it all at this upscale restaurant and bar floating atop the East River.

Washington Heights

La Marina
348 Dyckman St
At the very tip of Riverside Dr (seriously, it’s up there) lies this giant waterfront mecca with stunning Hudson River views and $5 happy hour specials every Monday-Friday.
 

Long Island City

Anable Basin Sailing Bar & Grill
4-40 44th Dr
This low-key joint with picnic table seating serves no-fuss burgers & brews against unobstructed skyline views.

Financial District

Watermark Bar
78 South St
This casual open-air spot along the East River has badass Brooklyn Bridge views and a menu that includes fried pickle chips and watermelon spiced margaritas.
 
Pier A Harbor House
22 Battery Pl
Statue of Liberty views, fine dining, and an extensive selection of beer, wine, and cocktails are just a few reasons why you should visit this recently converted historic landmark.

Merchants River House
375 South End Ave
This casual, family-friendly spot serves up classic American eats and a large selection of drinks alongside the Hudson River.
 
Battery Gardens
1 Battery Park
Tucked into the southernmost corner of Battery Park, this restaurant and bar serves seasonal eats and a large selection of brews against incredible Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island views.

Coney Island

Place to Beach
1301 Boardwalk W
This open-air Tiki bar and restaurant has a solid selection of frozen drinks and beers, live music, and panoramic ocean views.

Ruby’s Bar & Grill
1213 Boardwalk W
This Coney Island institution is still the place for waterside boardwalk chilling, with reliable beers, cocktails, and American eats. And don’t forget to order the funnel cake -- it’s tops.
 

Sheepshead Bay

Clemente’s Maryland Crab House
3939 Emmons Ave
This crab mecca is all about fresh seafood, cold drinks, and waterside views. And if you’re feeling ambitious? Splurge on the all-you-can-eat crab special every Monday & Tuesday.
 
Il Fornetto
2902 Emmons Ave
This marina-adjacent Italian eatery now offers a casual bar and drinks menu perfect for low-key waterfront chilling.

Rockaway Beach

Low Tide Bar
96th St at the Boardwalk
With a prime boardwalk location, you can’t go wrong at this reasonably priced spot serving casual beers, burgers, and cocktails.
 

Brooklyn Heights

Brooklyn Bridge Park
334 Furman St
There is a whole slew of booze-serving eateries to enjoy at this East River-adjacent park, including Luke’s Lobster (epic lobster rolls), Fornino (crazy-amazing pizza), Brooklyn Bridge Garden Bar (the best place to catch sunset), and Lizzmonade (lemonade meets booze, among other things).

Williamsburg

Smorgasburg
90 Kent Ave
This mega food and drink market also happens to be waterside, as if you needed another reason to go there.
 

Tribeca

Grand Banks
Pier 25 at Hudson River Park
This seasonal oyster bar perched atop a historic fishing boat serves -- what else? -- an incredible selection of sustainably farmed oysters and nautically inspired cocktails like the Iron Mermaid (cachaca, lime, pineapple & bitters).

Dumbo

The River Café
1 Water St
This landmark eatery offers sophisticated food and drinks against unobstructed views of Manhattan. But be sure to dress to impress -- there’s a dress code.
 

Red Hook

Brooklyn Crab
24 Reed St
This tri-level seafood shack serves up a bevy of fresh fish entrees alongside specialty cocktails like the Zeilboot (bourbon, mint syrup, pomegranate molasses, lemon juice & soda).

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Christine Fischer is a freelance writer dedicated to a strict diet of Champagne, cookies, and the occasional pizza. Follow her on Facebook and Instagram.