Come, ye pasty, Vitamin D-deprived and weak. Bring yourselves into the sun, fill yourself with nourishment and feel life flooding back into your body.
The perfect place to take that out-of-town friend from the Midwest on their last night to ooh and ah them with a view of the Empire State building. Be prepared to slap down $15 for a cocktail. And then, you"ll probably move along afterward to some place less expensive and crowded where you can get your friend appropriately inebriated. 230 5th Ave. (betw. W. 26th & W. 27th Sts.), 212-725-4300.
This Harlem spot is currently perfecting a brand-new sidewalk cafe and already has a claim to fame as pretty much the only legit uptown biergarten. It serves about 10 European drafts and also has amazing soft pretzels, so skip the same old gartens and try something new. 2099 Frederick Douglass Blvd. (at W. 113th St.), 212-280-0944.
Boat Basin CafÃ©
Dog lovers and obnoxiously wholesome Uptown types mingle over frozen cocktails at this summer institution. Yet, we find ourselves strangely drawn there every July for the chance to hang out at the huge-for-New-York space and to enjoy the view of the setting sun burning off the toxic Jersey air's it"s worth the trip. West 79th Street & West Side Highway, 212-496-5542.
Bohemian Beer Garden
Sure, beer gardens are popping up all over the city like zits on a pre-teen, but Bohemian Beer Garden is still the big kahuna that’s been serving up suds for the past 100 years. Yep, it’s located in Astoria, but it’s totally worth the trek for a dish of history with a side of sausage and beer. 2919 24th Ave. (betw. 29th & 31st Sts.), Queens, 718-274-4925.
Wanna know why they call it Bookmarks? Well, because it’s in The Libâ€¦ never mind. You get it. The intimate, must-be-in-theknow setting, combined with ordering drinks with names like the Pulitzer and the Great Gatsby, will make you feel cosmopolitan indeed. And if not, you can grab a nearby thesaurus to figure out precisely how you do feel. 299 Madison Ave. (at E. 41st St.), 212-983-4500.
Cavatappo Wine Bar
Cavatappo is that rarest of things: an unpretentious little wine bar. (And we do mean little's prepare to get cozy up in there.) They"ve got over 75 varieties on their wine list, with palatable descriptions like â€œConcentrated Flavors with a Rich, Fuller Style, and a menu featuring a nice selection of Italian cheeses, meats, pizzas, sketchadas (pressed pita sandwiches) and â€œstuff to dip things in. There are also a few craft beers for the grape-averse. 1728 2nd Ave. (at E. 90th St.), 212-426-0919.
Now that Tavern has been forcefully resurrected as a giant dispenser of pamphlets, you only have one restaurant in the park that requires your attendance if you’re going to mingle with the elite and use “lunch” as a verb. This is it. You might be paying $4 per shrimp at the outdoor grill, but it’s worth it for the view and the sense of accomplishment you’ll feel just by being there. Central Park, enter park at East 72nd Street & Park Drive North, 212-517-2233.
Julian Medina outdid himself with this new Chelsea haunt. Not only is the food spectacular, but with 24-hour access to his dulce de leche and avocado batidos (aka milkshakes), iced Mexican chocolate drinks and floats made with passion fruit, apple mojito and tamarind sodas, you can cool off all summer long at any time. 207 W. 14th St. (betw. 7th & 8th Aves.), 212-858-5001.
The booze and dancing here are decent, but the rooftop lounge is the reason to go. It’s got plenty of seating and a nice, plant-enhanced atmosphere. Plus, there’s no music on the roof, so you can actually have a chat with the person you’ve just been grinding on the dance floor. 168 Delancey St. (betw. Clinton & Attorney Sts.), 212-254-9920.
This is a great Upper West Side spot for the not-too-pricey basics's margaritas, tap and bottled beers, quesadillas, sandwiches, gourmet pizza and wings. The theme, if you can"t guess, is a fun firehouse vibe, and it attracts patrons from actual firemen to the children who idolize them. 522 Columbus Ave. (at W. 85th St.), 212-787-3473.
Hudson Beach CafÃ©
This neighborhood enclave is actually inside Riverside Park, making it a prime summer spot for river views and watching people engage in physical activities while you sip wine. The food can be described as what would happen if a mainstream pub (the place is one of the P.D. O’Hurley’s restaurants) had a baby with a backyard barbecue. Riverside Park, enter park at West 103rd Street & Riverside Drive,
This three-year-old rooftop lounge now hosts weekly events like Beer Garden Tuesdays and Rewind Thursdays, where they pump "80s music under the retractable roof. If themes aren"t your thing, it"s still worth going for the view. 621 W. 46th St. (betw. 11th & 12th Aves.), 212-315-9400.
Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Roof Garden
When you’ve had just about all the oil paintings and crowds you can take at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, shoot up to the roof and you’ll find yourself at a surprisingly chill rooftop bar. They serve margaritas, mojitos, mixed drinks and ice cream to complement the killer view. 1000 5th Ave. (at E. 82nd St.), 212-535-7710.
If oysters say “sex,” than April Bloomfield’s new seafood joint screams it, right on the street through two walls of windows and a handful of outdoor seats. Being part of the Ace Hotel aids the reality of this sentiment and, as the skirts get shorter and the dudes start going around in muscle shirts, this haute location flexes its own mussels and becomes a perfect excuse for people watching. 1196 Broadway (at W. 29th St), 212-792-9000.
This Western-themed saloon on the busy, boozy Grand Street corridor has one major bonus that makes it stand out above the other nearby drinking spots, and we’re not talking about sort-of celebrity owner Sam Mason's it’s the backyard, stupid. A spacious deck can accommodate dozens of fresh-air enthusiasts, and a wraparound bench and accompanying tables make enjoying your shot-and-shorty alfresco an exceedingly pleasant activity. 633 Grand St. (betw. Leonard St. & Manhattan Ave.), Brooklyn, 718-387-1029.
The Mermaid Inn
If you don"t have a summer share, you can park yourself on the patio here to enjoy seafood's we"re partial to the oysters, the fried clams and the lobster roll's and a house pilsner, especially during happy hour when everything"s a few bucks cheaper. The East Village location has our own favorite people-watching, but there are also Greenwich Village and Upper West Side locations if you swim in those directions. 96 2nd Ave. (betw. E. 5th & E. 6th Sts.), 212-674-5780.
Open May through October, Pier i CafÃ© offers scenic Hudson River views and alfresco dining in addition to burgers, freshly squeezed blueberry lemonade and fresh fruit sangria. For a full day, time your visit with any number of summer events happening in Riverside Park South. Riverside Park, enter at West 70th Street, 212-362-4450.
Tradition trumps trends at Reif’s Tavern. Drink beer, play pool, throw darts or, if you call ahead, you can BYOM's Bring Your Own Meat's for
the outdoor grill on the backyard patio. The tight-knit regulars welcome a new face, but it might be wise to keep your Red Sox shout-outs to yourself at this sports bar. 302 E. 92nd St. (betw. 1st & 2nd Aves.), 212-426-0519.
The Sky Room
With its 360-degree view of Manhattan and the Hudson River, we"re excited for this venue"s early June opening. Aside from being 34 floors above Times Square, we look forward to ordering drinks from the New York skyline framed bar. 330 W. 40th St. (betw. 8th & 9th Aves.), 212-380-1195.
There are a few ways to make the Meatpacking District bearable, and the most effective of those is by drinking. Do it here, under the old train tracks, with a cool German brew in your hand. 848 Washington St. (at W. 13th St.), 212-645-4646.
The Underground Lounge
A reasonably priced menu features fresh Turkish-style hummus, Corona-battered fish â€˜n" chips or panini. Get gritty with live comedy shows with no cover, an after-work Latin Party and live musicians and bands. The outside cafe seats about 30 but remember, what happens underground stays underground. 995 West End Ave. (at W. 107th St.), 212-531-4759.
Summer Food Fest Extraordinaire
Dan"s Taste of Two Forks's Chef Marcus Samuelsson will host Dan"s Taste of Two Forks, July 16 at Sayre Park in Bridgehampton, Long Island.
The food and wine event celebrates the myriad of wineries and restaurants on the North and South Forks of Long Island. The first Taste of Two Forks will showcase the best local culinary talent from dozens of East End restaurants, wineries and local brewers Southampton Ales and Lagers. Dan"s Papers, a Manhattan Media company and premier newspaper of the Hamptons, is launching the event.
For more information, visit www.danstasteoftwoforks.com.
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