The area surrounding Madison Square Garden may seem like an touristy, Irish-themed-bar circus upon first glance, but there are actually plenty of great places to eat and drink in the neighborhood -- from burgers to late-night pizza to whiskey. Before (or after) a big game (or a Billy Joel show, no judgment), these are the places to hit up.
The Essential Places to Eat & Drink Near Madison Square Garden
Best burger: Black Iron Burger
This burger chains's name is a total misnomer because the patty melt on rye with stout caramelized onions is a way better move than the eponymous Black Iron Burger. Grab one of those and an Allagash at the bar for a quick but filling meal.
Best outdoor drinking: Local West
The food here is classic American, as in deep-fried, mayo-covered, burger-based, and vaguely Asian -- like the BBQ chicken spring roll -- and you can add shrimp to anything for only six extra dollars... but that's all irrelevant, because the outdoor seating area is the perfect place to have a beer before or after a game, weather permitting.
Best for when you miss your train: Tracks Raw Bar and Grill
When faced with something as hellish as Penn Station Purgatory, you have two options: 1) continue to bear the crowd, or 2) drink multiple beers while eating oysters and shrimp cocktail at this surprisingly good in-station seafood spot.
Best place to pregame: Blarney Rock Pub
A three-minute walk from MSG makes this pub the Rangers fan command post, with plenty of screens for viewing the game and a rooftop bar stocked with all the standards. There are a lotta Blarneys in this town, but this one’s probably the best.
Best daytime pizza: Pizza Suprema
For those times when all you need is two cheap slices of pizza very quickly (like, game-is-starting-in-10-minutes quickly), this is your spot. At $3-$4, the pizza here is slightly pricier than some of the less-desirable dollar pizza joints in the neighborhood, but you get your money's worth in the form of crispy crust and copious amounts of cheese.
Best late-night pizza: Rose's Pizza
These are specialty pies, so only go plain if you want to be jealous of your friend who just got three enormous slices of the barbecue chicken variety. Rose's has two locations on the LIRR center strip of Penn Station within 50ft of one another, though, so if you mess up the first time, you get a second chance.
Best sandwiches: Salumeria Biellese
This cured meat and house-made sausage distributor sells to restaurants all across the city, so you know you're in good hands when it comes to its Italian heroes and meatball Parms.
Best after-work scene: Stout
Stout is arguably the least douchey post-work bar in an area that attracts a ton of douches. That's important. At the flagship location, you can expect an extensive beer menu (on draft and by the bottle), plus tons of Irish whiskey and a pretty decent $45-per-person buffet menu.
Best upscale food hall: The Pennsy
This 8,000sqft food hall boasts food from a roster of serious culinary talent, from Marc Forgione's Lobster Press to the first brick-and-mortar location from Pat LaFrieda. Put down that Auntie Anne’s pretzel, grab a doughnut from the Cinnamon Snail, and be prepared to miss your train.
Best actually good bar: Pennsylvania 6
Lest you become convinced that the only beer options in this area are limited to Guinness and anything that needs an orange slice, Pennsylvania 6 offers up an extensive collection of craft drafts and bottles, plus legitimately good food like beer-braised short ribs. And with giant projection screens, it’s just like a regular sports bar but, like, times six.
Best whiskey bar: American Whiskey
The inside of this Southern-inspired sports bar is enormous, with a 150-deep whiskey list to match. Pair those with small bites like lamb “lollipops” with grape pepper glaze and crushed pine nuts and venison sliders.
Best restaurant in a former fur showroom: Till & Sprocket
It's all about nicely crafted cocktails, a tight but fulfilling wine and beer list, and a tremendous short rib with polenta plate at this... yes... former fur showroom. It offers lunch and breakfast too, but come nighttime, it's way less of a place to drink out of missed-train fury, and way more of a neighborhood hangout in a 'hood that's still very fashion district-y, but seemingly on the verge of becoming a whole lot more -- as, ahem, this entire story proves.
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1. Black Iron Burger245 W 38th, New York
2. Local West1 Penn Plaza, New York
3. Tracks Raw Bar and GrillPenn Station, New York
4. Blarney Rock Pub137 West 33rd St, New York
5. Pizza Suprema413 8th Ave, New York
6. Rose Pizza1 Penn Plz, New York
7. Salumeria Biellese376 8th Ave, New York
8. Stout133 W 33rd St, New York
9. Pennsylvania 6132 W 31st St, New York
10. American Whiskey247 W 30th St, New York
11. Till & Sprocket140 W 30th St, New York
This branch of Black Iron Burger is a welcoming, rustic stop in the midst of bustling Midtown. Its iron-branded, griddle-cooked burgers are endlessly customizable, from housemade sauces (like Caesar mayonnaise and tahini yogurt) to Alpine-smoked bacon and wasabi horseradish cheddar. Pair it with 10 craft beers on tap and homemade malted milkshakes.
The food is classic American, as in deep fry, mayo, burger-based and vaguely Asian -- like the BBQ chicken spring roll -- and you can add shrimp to anything for only $6 extra dollars!! But the outdoor seating area is an objectively good place to have a beer before or after a game, weather permitting.
When faced with something as hellish as Penn Station Purgatory, you have two options: 1) continue to bear the crowd, or 2) pound nine beers while eating shrimp cocktail.
A three-minute walk from MSG yields this Rangers fan command post with plenty of screens for game-viewing and a rooftop bar stocked with all the standards. There are a'lotta Blarneys in this town, but this one’s probably the best.
Colin "Slice Harvester" Hagendorf, famed for eating a slice of pizza at every spot in the city, rated the crispy-crusted plain slice at this joint above all others (435 others, to be exact). And we agree: Suprema is definitely up there with the best of ‘em. This family-owned pizza haven has been slinging doughy street slices in Chelsea since 1964, and although the first 24 years of its life were spent serving "plain slices only," that mandate has since been lifted. Now, you can add a whole host of classic toppings to your pie or slice, from pepperoni, sausage &meatballs to mushrooms, garlic & fresh-roasted red peppers.
Located in Midtown, Rose serves up terrific crispy-crusted pizza that is the best of the best. And that’s even accounting for diminished returns.
Since 1925, this old-school Italian deli has been one of New York City's premier cured meat and (house-made) sausage distributors. And in addition to its imports and on-site creations, Salumeria Biellese also supplies a variety of prepared foods and sandwiches. We highly recommend the meatball Parm hero.
Located in the heart of Midtown, just seconds away from Madison Square Garden, Stout is an enormous spot boasting over 150 bottled beers, 25 drafts, and 65+ Irish whiskeys, as well as multiple bars, a dart alley, and a pool room. Walking into Stout feels like walking into a Dublin bar, with a large selection of appetizers to share and plenty of televisions to watch the game on.
Pennsylvania 6's a two-floored, deco-tinged beer bar/bistro right near MSG that has distinguished itself from the menagerie of Irish pubs in the area by serving bivalves, lobster, and bistro standards like beer-braised short ribs. There are also craft drafts you won't be finding in tallboy form at Penn Station, and you can catch the game on several projection screens while you slurp down some oysters.
With a whopping 150-deep whiskey list, AW is one of (if not the best) whiskey bars in the city. On the food menu, you'll find things like lamb “lollipops” with grape pepper glaze and crushed pine nuts, as well as beef brisket sliders that are way better than they need to be. The 6,500sqft space is conveniently located one block from Madison Square Garden and is especially great for lunch and dinner, or a post-game glass of whiskey.
It's all about nicely crafted cocktails, a tight but fulfilling wine and beer list, and a tremendous short rib with polenta plate at this former fur showroom. It offers lunch and breakfast too, but come night it's way less of a place to drink out of missed-train fury, and way more of a neighborhood hangout in a 'hood that's still very fashion district-y, but seemingly on the verge of becoming a whole lot more.