There are few things better than catching up with friends over drinks, and if you’re looking for the best bars in Greenwich Village to do so, I’ve got you covered.
As local New Yorker I frequent the charming Greenwich Village neighborhood, and even called it home for a time. As such I’ve visited the watering holes (which are plenty) for my fair share of beers, cocktails and glasses of wine.
Thanks to the college students that call the neighborhood home, some of the best bars in New York are in the Greenwich Village. So whether you’re looking for the best bars in Greenwich Village to dance, date or just drink, this guide is for you.
But hey — enough of the small talk, let’s dive in!
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Best Bars Greenwich Village
#15. Cafe Wha?
Founded in 1959, Cafe Wha? has long been one of the best bars in Greenwich Village. Don’t just take my word for it though, other notable patrons include Bob Dylan, Jimi Hendrix, Bruce Springsteen and Woody Allen.
So many icons of music and comedy have seen their careers bloom at Cafe Wha? and large crowds still frequent the joint hoping to catch a glimpse of a new up-and-comer.
As one of the best bars Greenwich Village has to offer, expect lines and a cover fee depending on who’s performing that night. And yes — they have performers most nights. Be sure to look at the schedule online and book accordingly.
Address: 115 MacDougal St, New York, NY 10012
#14. The Up & Up
I first visited The Up & Up thanks to a recommendation from a server at a nearby restaurant, who proclaimed it the best bar in Greenwich Village. I’ll give credit where credit is due, The Up & Up is damn good.
Expect an intimate and small bar that still gives off a comfortable and casual vibe. If you visit in the evening the bar is dimly lit and romantic, perfect for a date night.
There isn’t much in the way of food, only snacks likes nuts and charcuterie. What The Up & Up lacks in food options, it makes up for in drinks. The menu boasts more than 2 dozen cocktails and mocktails, so rest assured nobody will leave thirsty.
As one of the best bars in Greenwich Village you can expect a wait any day of the week. Make sure to make reservations ahead of time to skip the line.
Address: 116 MacDougal St, New York, NY 10012
#13. Carroll Place
Carroll Place is one of the best bars in Greenwich Village for dinner and drinks. Fellow foodies will appreciate the pizza and pasta nearly as much as the delicious cocktails and wine.
There is also an amazing bottomless brunch option for those who love boozy breakfast. For only $30 per person and the purchase of an entree, guests can enjoy bottomless mimosas, bloody marys and rose sangrias for 90 minutes.
And if you’re looking to really party, show up to Carroll Place on a weekend after 10PM. The whole joint transforms from one of the best bars in Greenwich Village into a club, swelling with people ready to dance.
Address: 157 Bleecker St, New York, NY 10012
#12. Stonewall Inn
It’s easy to forget that the fight for gay rights was riddled with turbulence. Before the 1960’s it was illegal to be openly lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or queer (LGBTQ) and the laws in NYC were especially harsh towards those in the LGBTQ community.
Things took a massive turn during the infamous Stonewall Uprising, which took place at the Stonewall Inn (one of the best bars in Greenwich Village) on June 28, 1969.
Frustrated by unjust raids, the patrons at the Stonewall Inn decided to fight back and riots ensued. These riots catapulted the LGBTQ+ community into the limelight and led to the re-evaluation of the relationship between the police and the LGBTQ+ community.
In effect, these events completely changed the course of history in America, which is why Stonewall was deemed a national historic landmark in New York City. Visitors are welcome to enjoy a drink at this notable gay bar while pondering the progress made and the distance yet to go.
All this to say, the Stonewall Inn is one of the best bars in Greenwich Village.
Address: 53 Christopher St, New York, NY 10014
Analogue is cozy and inviting, and exactly the type of bar you’ll stop at for just one drink only to lose track of time. The comfortable couches make it hard to leave, especially on a chilly evening when the drinks seem to warm you up a little extra.
As one of the best bars in Greenwich Village Analogue offers an impressive cocktail menu. You can expect both easy-drinking and spirit forward cocktails where you can really savor the individual ingredients of the drink.
Take the American Pie (my favorite) for example, made with Wild Turkey Rye 101, apple cider, lemon, cinnamon, and maple. If you take time to enjoy the drink, you can almost feel your way through each flavor.
Be sure to bring a friend since the intimate atmosphere makes for some of the best conversations. Since this is one of the best bars in Greenwich Village I suggest you make reservations in advance.
Address: 19 W 8th St, New York, NY 10011
#10. Bar Moga
Bar Moga is one of the best bars in Greenwich Village, and with a unique Japanese cuisine there’s all the more reason to visit. The sophisticated bar draws inspiration from 1920’s Japan, when there was a boom in Yōshoku (洋食), which translates roughly to western food.
Now western food doesn’t mean the Japanese were making burgers and chicken wings, rather they were infusing western influences into their kitchens. Bar Moga refers to it as comfort food, and with a cocktail in hand I’ll be the first to say I am very comfortable.
The cocktails are also Japanese-inspired. By taking Japanese spirits and making prohibition era cocktails Bar Moga has really set themselves as one of the best bars in Greenwich Village. My recommendation? Try the Arcade Smash, which is made with Poire Williams, black sugar shochu, lavender honey, orange, lemon.
Address: 128 W Houston St, New York, NY 10012
#9. The Blind Tiger
One of the best bars in Greenwich Village for craft beer is The Blind Tiger, thanks to an impressive rotation of brews and knowledgeable staff.
The bar is not an immediate looker, in that it won’t stop you in your tracks as you’re walking by but once your inside you’re going to want to stay a while. The joint feels like a home-town dive bar, but on the nice side of town.
There’s plenty of options on tap covering the gamut of both light and dark beers, and a stop is always worth it since the brews are rotated.
Plus, with an array of traditional bar food The Blind Tiger is ready for you whether its for a date night or after work drinks. Whether you’re looking for a cozy warm night or a summer drinking session, The Blind Tiger is one of the best bars in Greenwich Village.
Address: 281 Bleecker St, New York, NY 10014
Offering traditional French fare in a casual setting, Amelie is the place to go if you’re looking for an easy-going night on the town. Boasting a Bib Gourmand Michelin rating (which is awarded to good value restaurants) Amelie is one of the best bars in Greenwich Village.
And speaking of good values, Amelie has a great happy hour. Undoubtedly the most enticing item on the happy hour menu is the wine flight. For only $13 you can sample three wines or choose one of their signature flights.
Whether you’re a novice or experienced wine drinker, the flight option allows you to explore and find something that you may not have otherwise. Also, make sure to order the baked cheese. It’s delicious and perfect for splitting between two.
But even after happy hour Amelie is one of the best bars in Greenwich Village, because that same wine flight only costs $18 (which is still a great value in this expensive city).
Address: 566 Amsterdam Ave, New York, NY 10024
#7. Down the Hatch
Down the Hatch may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but it’s still one of the best bars in Greenwich Village. This isn’t where you go for a romantic date night, this is more like a college frat-house.
If you’re looking for a night out with loud music, inexpensive drinks and the potential of making new friends then head to Down the Hatch for a weekend you will (or might not) remember.
And if you’re looking for dive bar vibes but not necessarily looking to party, just show up earlier in the day. Down the Hatch is one of the best bars in Greenwich Village thanks to generous deals like half off the entire bar Monday to Friday from 12-7PM.
Address: 179 West 4th Street, New York, NY 10014
#6. Off the Wagon
Down the Hatch is another bar in Greenwich Village with a college-town feel thanks in large part to the swarms of New York University students who frequent it.
If you stop by during the day the bar is relatively empty, except for the few folks taking advantage of the TV’s to watch the game. If you show up at night, well let’s just say you should be ready to party.
As one of the best bars in Greenwich Village, the energy at Off the Wagon is contagious. It doesn’t take much before you’re breaking out dance moves you didn’t even knew you could do!
Address: 109 MacDougal St, New York, NY 10012
#5. Employees Only
Speakeasy’s are quite popular in New York City, and one of the best speakeasy bars in Greenwich Village is Employees Only. You have to walk passed a tarot card reader in the foyer before you get into the hidden bar.
In fact, Employees Only has recently been voted the 30th best bar in North America and 47th best in the world. The recognition is well deserved too, every time I visit I wish I had more room in my belly for drinks.
Whether you’re after classic manhattans or negronis, or a specialty cocktail like the Strangers Punch (Havana Club Rum with Clarified Milk, Torres 15 Brandy, Tibetan Tiger tea, cinnamon syrup & a twist of orange) Employees Only will not disappoint.
Address: 510 Hudson St, New York, NY 10014
#4. White Oak Tavern
White Oak Tavern has a high spot on our list of the best bars in Greenwich Village thanks in large part to their decorations. Ambience is a key factor when turning a good bar into a great one, and this joint is amazing.
If you can, ask to be seated outside. The entrance is always adorned with either flowers in the spring or holiday lights in the winter. And before you begin to panic thinking you’ll freeze allow me to mention the outdoor booths are heated.
And if the space heaters aren’t enough, order some cocktails! This is one one of the best bars in Greenwich Village so the drink menu is extensive. Wine, beer, cocktails and mocktails are all par for the course.
I also hope you bring an appetite when visiting White Oak Tavern, since not only is this one of the best bars in Greenwich Village it’s also a great place to eat. The dry-aged burger will cost you a pretty penny ($27) but is worth the stop alone.
Address: 21 Waverly Pl, New York, NY 10003
Dante Caffe dates back to 1915. It served as a staple for the community before slowly fading into oblivion before two Australians decided to breathe new life into the historic institution in 2015.
The result was striking, Dante was named the best bar in the world in 2019 (4 years after re-opening!) and appeared on the list again this year (2022). Safe to say — no one will argue it’s one of the best bars in Greenwich Village!
The menu is well curated with small fare but the drinks is where this popular NYC bar truly shines. The hardest part about this iconic experience is getting reservations because this is one of the busiest spots in the city.
After visiting Dante on several occasions, I can confirm that their drinks are some of the best (and strongest) I’ve had in the city. The dirty martini is particularly memorable but my partner is partial to the negroni.
Dante boasts two locations in Greenwich Village — Dante West Village and Caffe Dante. That’s right, we have two of the best bars in Greenwich Village within walking distance of each other.
I haven’t had luck getting into Caffe Dante without a reservation, so I suggest booking in advance. Try to book Friday evening during the spring and summer because they usually have a pleasant live jazz band.
Locations: 551 Hudson St, New York, NY 10014 & 79-81 MacDougal St, New York, NY 10012
Happy Hour: Dante offers a generous happy hour between 3pm and 5pm. Dante West Village offers martinis for $10 and Caffe Dante offers negronis for $10. The price/quality ratio can’t be beat!
#2. Katana Kitten
The recognition come thanks to Katana Kitten’s director of deliciousness Masahiro Urushido. The creative mixologist is perpetually donning a smile, all while creating some of the best cocktails in the world.
In fact, Urushido has been named New York’s top bartender. But enough of the awards, at the end of the day the best bars in Greenwich Village deliver delicious drinks, and Katana Kitten checks all the boxes.
The Japanese-American bar has mastered the art of high-balls (a drink made with a spirit and mixed with a larger amount of a chaser). The melon-lime soda is made with absolut lime, midori, lime, matcha, lime leaf and is the perfect drink for a sunny day!
Address: 531 Hudson St, New York, NY 10014
Started by adventurous duo Nico de Soto and and Greg Boehm, Mace has graced the list of World’s Best Bars for four years in a row. An astonishing feat, considering this popular Manhattan bar was opened in 2015, merely eight years ago.
Furthermore, Mace won the Best Cocktail Menu Award in 2022, meaning it’s well cemented as one of the best bars in Greenwich Village.
The concept of this trendy cocktail bar in Manhattan is simple: incorporate adventure and travel into every perfectly-crafted drink. The menu boasts extravagant drinks feature exotic spices from around the world. The bar’s popularity grew like wildfire as evidenced by the fact they had to relocate to a bigger space in the heart of Greenwich Village.
Although there are other bars in Greenwich Village voted higher on the list of the best bars in the world, I chose to give Mace our #1 spot because of their service. The staff is the most inviting of all the Greenwich Village bars I’ve visited!
Getting a reservation at Mace, one of the best bars in Greenwich Village, may require nothing short of a miracle. Unless you’re willing to toast before 5pm or after midnight, make sure to make reservations well in advance.
Address: 35 W 8th St, New York, NY 10011
Best bars Greenwich Village (Post Summary)
- Katana Kitten
- White Oak Tavern
- Employees Only
- Off the Wagon
- Down the Hatch
- The Blind Tiger
- Bar Moga
- Stonewall Inn
- Carroll Place
- The Up & Up
- Cafe Wha?
Best bars Greenwich Village (Map)
And there you have it my friends, the best bars in Greenwich Village.