clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile
An exterior view of Jimmy’s Corner during the coronavirus pandemic on May 13, 2020 in New York City.
Jimmy’s Corner.
Noam Galai/Getty Images

25 Tried-and-True Dive Bars in NYC

Grimy, lovable spaces with well-worn seats and solid beers

View as Map
Jimmy’s Corner.
| Noam Galai/Getty Images

Referring to dive bars as "best" or superior to others is somewhat tricky, since none of the places on this map are vying for the title — as doing so would render it not a dive. So here is a broad list of some of Eater's favorite dives around New York and what makes them special.

These 25 bars are downright grungy, somewhat lovable, and absolutely solid, where a beer under $6 is the norm and ordering food is not. Prepare for sticky floors, tagged bathrooms, and gallons of cheap booze. None of them look good with the lights on, but all are a fun time.

Health experts consider dining out to be a high-risk activity for the unvaccinated; it may pose a risk for the vaccinated, especially in areas with substantial COVID transmission.

Read More
Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

The Punch Bowl

Copy Link

The location has been occupied by bars since New York City’s pre-Prohibition Era. It’s the kind of place to grab a seat and settle in for hours.

Glacken's Bar & Grill

Copy Link

Glacken’s is nothing if not reliable: It has been pouring beer in the neighborhood since 1940 and hasn’t slowed down once in 80 years. Doesn’t hurt that it’s within walking distance of Yankee Stadium, too.

Reif's Bar

Copy Link

Reif’s is a neighborhood bar with a friendly staff, where patrons all seem to know each other. PBRs are always flowing, whether inside or on the bar’s outdoor patio.

This Upper East side karaoke bar has all the trappings of a New York City dive: It’s cheap, loud, and regularly described by users on Yelp as “cramped.” There’s drink specials from 1 to 7 p.m. nearly every day of the week.

Paradise Alley

Copy Link

Paradise Alley is ideal for those hunting for a comfortable, neighborhood spot to watch a game with friends and a bucket of beer.

Subway Inn

Copy Link

Subway Inn first opened in 1937, back when it made sense to serve beer for less than six dollars. More than 80 years and one relocation later, this Upper East Side dive now sells beer starting at six dollars, but still remains remains one of the truest dive bars in America.

Rudy's Bar & Grill

Copy Link

This historic, no-frills dive opened in 1933 and has been serving stunningly cheap bottles and drafts ever since. Normally the move is not to eat at a dive bar, but exceptions are made in the name of free hot dogs.

Jimmy's Corner

Copy Link

This grimy, narrow bar in the heart of Times Square is full of character, and only recently reopened after owner and boxing world legend Jimmy Glenn passed away due to coronavirus complications in 2020. Beers start at less than $4 and are always served cold.

An exterior view of Jimmy’s Corner during the coronavirus pandemic on May 13, 2020.
Jimmy’s Corner in 2020.
Noam Galai/Getty Images

Billymark's West

Copy Link

Billymark’s brick-walled exterior houses a Chelsea time machine (it opened in the ’50s) that is open from 8 to 4 a.m. every day of the week. This is a dive in its pure form.

The Jar Bar

Copy Link

Enjoy $6 jar-and-shot specials in the backyard, and outside food is welcome at this Sunnyside dive. Beloved by locals, neighborhood watering hole the Jar Bar is open on both Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Johnny's Bar

Copy Link

Very tiny and very divey, Johnny’s in the West Village is a time-capsule bar, otherwise surrounded by an ever-changing neighborhood. Fights have been spotted here on more than one occasion.

The Stonewall Inn gets all the attention when it comes to NYC’s most historic gay bars, but Julius is even older and less of a tourist destination. Well drinks and beers are under $10, which is just one reason this narrow bar is often packed. The underrated burger, cooked on grill top across the wooden bar, is also very popular after a drink or two.

Blue & Gold Tavern

Copy Link

With mostly friendly bartenders, Blue and Gold Tavern is an East Village veteran.

This Alphabet City institution is open daily from about 5 p.m. to 2 a.m. with drink-of-choice PBR and other domestic beers. Two pool tables provide entertainment. Cash only.

Two green pool tables inside a bar.
Lucy’s.
Nick Solares/Eater NY

International Bar

Copy Link

This is the third home for International Bar, which started on St. Mark’s Place in the ’70s and then had a stint down the street. Now it has settled into the former site of Coal Yard, where the crowd is local, there is a constant flow of New York characters, and cans of beer start at $3.

Sophie's

Copy Link

This East Village watering hole has survived the neighborhood’s changes and tougher times due to its unwavering charm. Inside you’ll find a tiny space with cheap beers, a single pool table, and a solid jukebox.

Nancy Whiskey Pub

Copy Link

This 50-year-old Tribeca bar is beloved for its dumpy, no-frills vibe in one of New York’s priciest neighborhoods. The pours are generous, the prices are great, and there’s a shuffleboard table. No one is sober at Nancy.

Welcome to the Johnsons

Copy Link

The vibe at this LES staple is a 1970s basement laden with wood and plastic, but dirtier. The affordable drinks add to the dingy charm.

Rocka Rolla

Copy Link

Rocka Rolla comes from the same people behind some of Brooklyn’s best dives, including Do Or Dive, Lucky Dog, Skinny Dennis, and others, but this Williamsburg watering hole is one of our favorites of the bunch. It’s located steps from the Birria-Landia taco truck, and brings together the best of dive bar conventions — classic rock, beer served in goblets, frozen coffee drinks — in a spacious setting with room to spread out.

Montero Bar & Grill

Copy Link

This Cobble Hill bar is known for its nautical theme, but instead of being kitschy, Montero’s feels like traveling back in time. The drinks are strong here.

The Alibi

Copy Link

For the locals that swarm Alibi in Fort Greene, the go-to move is often a bottle of Bud. There’s a pool table, arcade games, and an actually nice outdoor patio. Note: Alibi, which has been on best dive bar lists for years, has always been known for taking only cash, but Eater has not been able to confirm if that’s still the case.

For many, a visit to this Cobble Hill dive never disappoints. A now-broken jukebox leaves Pac-Man and people-watching as entertainment while sipping on drinks won’t make it feel like rent week is here.

Tip Top Bar & Grill

Copy Link

Aside from being a literal dive bar (it’s on the basement level), this Bed-Stuy bar embodies every sense of the word: mind-blowingly dirty and wonderfully cheap. It’s closed on Mondays.

Brooklyn Ice House

Copy Link

Between the $6 beer and shot combos and $6 Frito pies, Brooklyn Ice House is a reliable stop any day of the week. Cash only.

Homestretch Pub

Copy Link

Despite being advertised as a bar and grill on its awning, Homestretch Pub is only the former, with a limited menu of cheap beers and well drinks. This Gravesend dive boasts darts, popcorn ceilings, and, apparently, almost no desire to court new customers.

Loading comments...

The Punch Bowl

The location has been occupied by bars since New York City’s pre-Prohibition Era. It’s the kind of place to grab a seat and settle in for hours.

Glacken's Bar & Grill

Glacken’s is nothing if not reliable: It has been pouring beer in the neighborhood since 1940 and hasn’t slowed down once in 80 years. Doesn’t hurt that it’s within walking distance of Yankee Stadium, too.

Reif's Bar

Reif’s is a neighborhood bar with a friendly staff, where patrons all seem to know each other. PBRs are always flowing, whether inside or on the bar’s outdoor patio.

Iggy's

This Upper East side karaoke bar has all the trappings of a New York City dive: It’s cheap, loud, and regularly described by users on Yelp as “cramped.” There’s drink specials from 1 to 7 p.m. nearly every day of the week.

Paradise Alley

Paradise Alley is ideal for those hunting for a comfortable, neighborhood spot to watch a game with friends and a bucket of beer.

Subway Inn

Subway Inn first opened in 1937, back when it made sense to serve beer for less than six dollars. More than 80 years and one relocation later, this Upper East Side dive now sells beer starting at six dollars, but still remains remains one of the truest dive bars in America.

Rudy's Bar & Grill

This historic, no-frills dive opened in 1933 and has been serving stunningly cheap bottles and drafts ever since. Normally the move is not to eat at a dive bar, but exceptions are made in the name of free hot dogs.

Jimmy's Corner

An exterior view of Jimmy’s Corner during the coronavirus pandemic on May 13, 2020.
Jimmy’s Corner in 2020.
Noam Galai/Getty Images

This grimy, narrow bar in the heart of Times Square is full of character, and only recently reopened after owner and boxing world legend Jimmy Glenn passed away due to coronavirus complications in 2020. Beers start at less than $4 and are always served cold.

An exterior view of Jimmy’s Corner during the coronavirus pandemic on May 13, 2020.
Jimmy’s Corner in 2020.
Noam Galai/Getty Images

Billymark's West

Billymark’s brick-walled exterior houses a Chelsea time machine (it opened in the ’50s) that is open from 8 to 4 a.m. every day of the week. This is a dive in its pure form.

The Jar Bar

Enjoy $6 jar-and-shot specials in the backyard, and outside food is welcome at this Sunnyside dive. Beloved by locals, neighborhood watering hole the Jar Bar is open on both Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Johnny's Bar

Very tiny and very divey, Johnny’s in the West Village is a time-capsule bar, otherwise surrounded by an ever-changing neighborhood. Fights have been spotted here on more than one occasion.

Julius

The Stonewall Inn gets all the attention when it comes to NYC’s most historic gay bars, but Julius is even older and less of a tourist destination. Well drinks and beers are under $10, which is just one reason this narrow bar is often packed. The underrated burger, cooked on grill top across the wooden bar, is also very popular after a drink or two.

Blue & Gold Tavern

With mostly friendly bartenders, Blue and Gold Tavern is an East Village veteran.

Lucy's

Two green pool tables inside a bar.
Lucy’s.
Nick Solares/Eater NY

This Alphabet City institution is open daily from about 5 p.m. to 2 a.m. with drink-of-choice PBR and other domestic beers. Two pool tables provide entertainment. Cash only.

Two green pool tables inside a bar.
Lucy’s.
Nick Solares/Eater NY

International Bar

This is the third home for International Bar, which started on St. Mark’s Place in the ’70s and then had a stint down the street. Now it has settled into the former site of Coal Yard, where the crowd is local, there is a constant flow of New York characters, and cans of beer start at $3.

Related Maps

Sophie's

This East Village watering hole has survived the neighborhood’s changes and tougher times due to its unwavering charm. Inside you’ll find a tiny space with cheap beers, a single pool table, and a solid jukebox.

Nancy Whiskey Pub

This 50-year-old Tribeca bar is beloved for its dumpy, no-frills vibe in one of New York’s priciest neighborhoods. The pours are generous, the prices are great, and there’s a shuffleboard table. No one is sober at Nancy.

Welcome to the Johnsons

The vibe at this LES staple is a 1970s basement laden with wood and plastic, but dirtier. The affordable drinks add to the dingy charm.

Rocka Rolla

Rocka Rolla comes from the same people behind some of Brooklyn’s best dives, including Do Or Dive, Lucky Dog, Skinny Dennis, and others, but this Williamsburg watering hole is one of our favorites of the bunch. It’s located steps from the Birria-Landia taco truck, and brings together the best of dive bar conventions — classic rock, beer served in goblets, frozen coffee drinks — in a spacious setting with room to spread out.

Montero Bar & Grill

This Cobble Hill bar is known for its nautical theme, but instead of being kitschy, Montero’s feels like traveling back in time. The drinks are strong here.

The Alibi

For the locals that swarm Alibi in Fort Greene, the go-to move is often a bottle of Bud. There’s a pool table, arcade games, and an actually nice outdoor patio. Note: Alibi, which has been on best dive bar lists for years, has always been known for taking only cash, but Eater has not been able to confirm if that’s still the case.

Boat

For many, a visit to this Cobble Hill dive never disappoints. A now-broken jukebox leaves Pac-Man and people-watching as entertainment while sipping on drinks won’t make it feel like rent week is here.

Tip Top Bar & Grill

Aside from being a literal dive bar (it’s on the basement level), this Bed-Stuy bar embodies every sense of the word: mind-blowingly dirty and wonderfully cheap. It’s closed on Mondays.

Brooklyn Ice House

Between the $6 beer and shot combos and $6 Frito pies, Brooklyn Ice House is a reliable stop any day of the week. Cash only.

Homestretch Pub

Despite being advertised as a bar and grill on its awning, Homestretch Pub is only the former, with a limited menu of cheap beers and well drinks. This Gravesend dive boasts darts, popcorn ceilings, and, apparently, almost no desire to court new customers.

Related Maps