Welcome to Ask Eater, a column from Eater New York where the site’s editors, reporters, and critics answer specific or baffling restaurant requests from readers and friends. Have a question for us? Submit your question in this form.
My office is moving. I’ve been lucky enough to work from Brooklyn Heights for the past three years, and was spoiled with so many great places to grab a post-work cocktail to decompress. My current go-to spots are Elsa, Long Island Bar, and June, to give you an idea of the types of places I like. We’re moving to Midtown next week, west of Bryant Park, and I’m already having separation anxiety. Is there anywhere in my new work neighborhood to chill out with a nice cocktail and that has enough space where it’s not weird to show up solo? I’m looking for a nice cocktail place and someplace that at least has snacks, though it would be great if I could also get a full meal there if I were hungry. I’m fine with the typical NYC $12 to 15 cocktail price, but also love a deal!
— Aching for BK
Unfortunately, here are some actual answers that the New York-based Eater staff gave when asked this question:
“wow what if Long Island Bar was our post-work bar”
“like.... have they been to Midtown?”
Lol, RIP. I can’t blame you for asking — our old office was in Midtown, and I never found my ideal after work bar in the area. The good ones tend to be overly crowded, and they’re often not worth the price. Also, the three bars you named might be some of the best in the city, let alone Brooklyn.
The move is definitely to try for hotel bars, which tend to be a bit more approachable and peaceful, at least for Midtown. For your first try, the team suggests that you check out upscale cocktail bar the Rum House, located in the Hotel Edison.
It’s a cozy space that’s been around for decades but was renovated in 2011 by the team behind popular cocktail and whiskey bar Ward III. As the name suggests, rum-based concoctions make up a huge portion of the menu, though classics like a Manhattan and Moscow Mule are available as well. It’s considered one of the best cocktail bars in the city, a welcome taste of downtown craft cocktail culture in Midtown.
The downside — and there is usually a downside to staying in Midtown after work — is that it can crowd up if you go too late. Aim to get there before 6 p.m. if possible, which would let you catch happy hour, too. Or, better yet, find another bar that’s on the way home.