Halloween weekend is one of the spookiest times of the year, a three-day marathon filled with distinctly New York horrors like sweet potato casserole martinis and $50 Ubers between Greenpoint and Williamsburg. Still, there are lots of cool ways to celebrate for those who like to get festive at the city’s restaurants and bars. We’ve rounded up a few of our favorites that fall on Halloween, and the days leading up to it, from spooky afternoon teas to haunted movie marathons.
Book a spooky afternoon tea
Where: Sarisa Cafe
Where: October 16 — 31
This new Thai dessert spot serves a decadent afternoon tea service on the weekends. Through the end of October, this Midtown newcomer is offering a version of its tiered desserts with a Halloween theme.
Eat a dirt cup
Where: Salty Lunch Lady’s Little Luncheonette
Where: October 26 — 30
Dirt cups are one of our favorite childhood desserts. Dria Atencio of Salty Lunch Lady’s Little Luncheonette will be running a special for Halloween with these pudding cups topped with cookie dirt and gummy worms.
Visit a Halloween hotspot hidden in a Bushwick loft
Where: October 28
Habibi, the Bushwick Bachannalian restaurant that you enter through a freight elevator outfitted with a free champagne cart, is throwing a Halloween dinner. The $90 per person experience can be booked through the Habibi website. Eater anointed it as one of America’s most “maximalist” and we have no doubt it will live up to that title for Halloween.
Join an orange-themed feast for fall
Where: Farm to People
Where: October 31
Produce company Farm to People is throwing an orange-themed feast on October 31 with Fancy Feast Supper Club. The four-course meal includes items like persimmon caprese skewers, focaccia with kimchi-miso butter, carrot-and-ricotta stuffed pasta, and pumpkin tiramisu for dessert. Reservations can be booked on Resy.
Taste terror with a side of terroir
Where: Film Noir Cinema
Where: October 27
This natural wine event series pairs horror moves with bottles. The latest of Terror Terroir’s screenings will be a mystery film at Film Noir Cinema in Greenpoint on October 27. $20 covers admission and two glasses of wine. Costumes are encouraged.
Stock up on trick-or-treats from around the globe
Where: Economy Candy
Economy Candy is always packed to the brim with specialty, otherwise hard-to-find candies from around the world that will impress even the most picky trick-or-treaters. Beware: You may have to fight your way to the checkout line. The historic Lower East Side candy shop expanded for the first time in its 90-year history earlier this year with a second location in Chelsea Market.
Where: Pop Up Grocer
Where: October 31
Pop Up Grocer is a store that specializes in those kinds of products you see on Instagram but haven’t yet made their way into many stores. This Halloween, they’re hosting a trick-or-treat sampling party for kids (from 4 to 7 p.m.) and adults (7 to 9 p.m.) — complimentary booze with purchase.
Cozy up for a horror movie at this Brooklyn drive-in theater
Where: Skyline Drive-in
When: Through Monday, October 31
Greenpoint waterfront drive-in movie theater Skyline has a marathon of scary movies like The Exorcist, Texas Chainsaw Massacre, and A Nightmare on Elm Street. There’s a concession stand on-site that opens two hours before the film starts, but you can also bring your own takeout. If you don’t have a car but are still down to catch an outdoor flick, bring blankets. (Chairs are provided.) Tickets have to be purchased online in advance.
Your best bet for (maybe) seeing a ghost
Where: Ear Inn
Ear Inn is one of the oldest bars in NYC, and it also proclaims to be one of the most haunted. Though we can’t fact-check that second point, Halloween might be when the allegedly friendly Ear Inn ghost finally comes out to play. At the very least, enjoy a slice of New York history with a solid burger and beer.
Find out what happens if you say “Beetlejuice” three times fast
Where: Beetle House
The tagline at this East Village Beetlejuice-themed bar is “every day is Halloween.” That’s especially true come spooky season. Fall cocktails on the menu include an apple cider doughnut cocktail, a sweet potato casserole martini, and a Jack’s Pumpkin old-fashioned. Come in costume or as your silly little self and enjoy all the decor in homage to the world of Tim Burton.