A Professional Drinker's Guide to NYC

April 18, 2016

Looking for the best bars in NYC? 

Though we like to consider ourselves seasoned barflies, it’s always best to defer to the professionals. So we asked these cocktail experts about their favorite spots to catch a buzz in NYC. Here are their favorite bars, breweries, and speakeasies in the city.

(21 activities)
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    Gun Hill Brewing Company Brewery Tour

    Tap into your inner beer lover during this frothy experience. Check out the inner workings of one of NYC’s favorite microbreweries, getting an intimate look at how this facility crafts delicious and complex beers from start-to-finish. Featuring a range of products, such as barrel-aged stouts, pomegranate wheats, and more hoppy concoctions, Gun Hill Brewing Company features a little something for everyone. Of course, in addition to learning about the thought and work behind these brews, you’ll be able to judge them for yourself with ample tastings. One thing is certain - this tour is sure to keep you foaming at the mouth.
    Gun Hill Brewing Company Brewery Tour

    3227 Laconia Ave, Bronx

    • Tour the production floors of a popular and creative New York microbrewery
    • Taste a range of delicious beers while learning about the processes that differentiate them
    • Discover a new favorite brand of beer during an intimate introduction
    • Enjoy expanding your knowledge of brewing while letting loose with a few drinks
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    10 positive reviews
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    Rooftop Lounge Experience

    Check out the view from the top with an exciting night out at New York’s coolest rooftop bars and lounges. You’ll hang out at three exclusive locations, like Skyroom, Monarch, PHD, or 230 Fifth. Throughout the night, enjoy three perfectly balanced complimentary drinks of your choice and a delicious appetizer. Rub elbows and clink glasses with native New Yorkers and world travelers alike, and get ready for a ritzy night on and above the town that you won’t soon forget.
    Rooftop Lounge Experience

    Midtown, New York

    • Hang out at 3 of New York’s best rooftop bars and lounges
    • Take in the NYC skyline at bars such as Skyroom, Monarch, PHD, and 230 Fifth
    • Enjoy 3 complimentary drinks and an appetizer
    • Meet real New Yorkers, and mingle with people from all over the world
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    12 positive reviews
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    New York Craft Cocktail Tour

    Do you consider yourself a cocktail aficionado? Or perhaps you’re the kind of person who sits down at a cocktail bar and orders a beer? Regardless, this is the tour for you! This Happy Hour tour will bring you to the center of New York’s booming cocktail culture as you visit some of the best cocktail bars in the city. Along the way you will sample delicious libations, swap tales of speakeasies and gangsters, and shop for new local craft spirit. You’ll even get a chance to learn how to make craft cocktails, while discovering some of the best places to grab a drink in the Big Apple. It’s a great way to start off an unforgettable evening in New York City.
    New York Craft Cocktail Tour

    500 E 9th St, New York

    • Find the best tucked-away places to grab a drink in New York’s East Village
    • Learn how prohibition shaped NYC, and the speakeasies and gangsters who influenced the city’s cocktail culture
    • Discover new spirits from local micro-distilleries and see how bartenders are revolutionizing cocktails in America with fresh, artisanal ingredients
    • Taste delicious craft cocktails at some of New York’s best bars
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    11 positive reviews
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    SoHo Wine Tour

    Few things in life are better than drinking wine. In fact, that’s why some doctors recommend a glass (or two) a day. Now, you can get your daily dosage and more on this wine tour through the lovely SoHo neighborhood. Your trip begins at Galli Restaurant, and shortly after, you’ll stop at Comodo, a place that believes in evolving the dinner party craft. Your last stop will take you to either Boqueria, a Spanish wine bar, or San Marino for some fine Italian wine and cuisine. By the end of the day, you will have sampled some of the best wine this city has to offer.
    SoHo Wine Tour

    45 Mercer St, New York

    • Discover the world of wine in SoHo with friends and family
    • Visit up to four wine locations, including City Winery and Comodo
    • Learn about wine varietals from a wine ambassador in a fun and friendly environment
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    6 positive reviews
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    "Bottled Art"- Art and Wine Painting

    Join Unarthodox for a wonderful creative night out! Bring a bottle of wine and your creativity. This is not your typical art and wine class, you'll incorporate paint, music, aromas and a meditative environment to help unleash your creativity! Leave all your stress behind, you are entering a judgement-free, friendly, fun and sophisticated environment. Come alone, bring your spouse, your date or friends. Your instructor will guide you through the process of creating a masterpiece! You will be amazed with the results! You do not need to be an artist. All supplies and materials are included. Just bring your favorite bottle of wine and Unarthodox will do the rest! This class is perfect for Private Parties and Date Night.
    "Bottled Art"- Art and Wine Painting

    547 W 27th St, New York

    • Use paint, music and meditative exercises to help unleash your creativity in a relaxed, friendly environment
    • Follow your instructor through the process of creating a masterpiece
    • Bring a bottle of wine to get your imagination moving
    • Tap into your creativity and open the floodgates for self-expression and exploration
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    Hamilton Happy Hour Tour

    Looking to follow in the footsteps of Alexander Hamilton (well, minus the unfortunate ending)? Get the full “Little Lion” experience during this NYC walking tour! Tour the streets of the city’s oldest neighborhood, Hamilton’s very own stomping ground, alongside a friendly local guide. Enjoy anecdotes covering not just Hamilton’s life, but about how the neighborhood has evolved dramatically since his days, and how his legacy played a role in that evolution. Wall Street, the Stock Exchange, and the nation’s financial system are all covered. You’ll also visit Hamilton’s gravesite, and stop in at a variety of favorite local food stops along the way. When it’s time to stop walking and talking, you’ll end the tour with celebratory pint in toast of Hamilton’s life at Fraunces Tavern- the very same tavern that Hamilton and Burr ate before their infamous duel. Talk about bang for your buck! Too soon?
    Hamilton Happy Hour Tour

    54 Pearl St, New York

    • Learn all about Alexander Hamilton during a NYC walking tour
    • Hear stories of Hamilton’s impact on the nation’s financial system
    • End your tour at the renowned Fraunces Tavern
    • Exercise your mind during a social stroll
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    NYC Pizza, Beer & History Tour

    Pizza and beer: a celebrated combo among college students. However, anyone can enjoy these delicious classics, as you’ll discover on this walking tour through some of the best pizza and beer haunts Greenwich Village has to offer. Italian immigrants have been making pizzas here for decades! You’ll discover interesting tidbits about each unique place, the different and very important ingredients, and even various oven types, all while savoring three different styles of pizza. Between slices, wash everything down with a visit to two historic bars, including a former speakeasy that operated during the prohibition. You will also get to hear about the local history and see what drew famous artists and musicians, such as Bob Dylan and F. Scott Fitzgerald, to this neighborhood. Raise your glass, grab a plate, and get ready for a pizza and beer experience unlike any other.
    NYC Pizza, Beer & History Tour

    201 Bleecker St, New York

    • Enjoy a walking tour of pizza and beer in Greenwich Village
    • Visit three different pizzerias, each specializing in a different style of pizza
    • Sample beers from a well-known speakeasy
    • Discuss the architecture, people, and history of this unique and vibrant neighborhood
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    10 positive reviews
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    Vine, Wine and Dine on East Seneca Lake

    Feeling a little bottled up? Uncork with a tour that really pours on the fun! During this trip along the eastern shores of Seneca Lake, you’ll visit four local wineries, where you’ll taste multiple vintages, enjoy delicious pairings, eat a gourmet lunch, and learn all about the winemaking process. The first stop on this intoxicating tour is Silver Thread Vineyards, where you’ll tour the grounds before heading to the tasting room for flights of Riesling, Pinot Noir, and a Blackbird paired with local cheese. Next up, you’ll head to Red Newt Wine Cellars for a private tasting of their impressive selection, followed by a locally-sourced lunch in their bistro. After lunch, you’ll visit Standing Stone Vineyards to get a taste of three vintages of a single varietal, exploring the impact of aging on red wine. Finally, you’ll end your adventure at Damiani Wine Cellars, for a sweet ending comprised of a locally made chocolate paired with Damiani’s wines.
    Vine, Wine and Dine on East Seneca Lake

    222 S Cayuga St, Ithaca

    • Visit wineries on the eastern shore of Seneca Lake, including Silver Thread Vineyards, Red Newt Wine Cellars, Damiani Wine Cellars, and Standing Stone Vineyards
    • Expand your knowledge of wine during four professionally guided tastings and tours
    • Fill up on a scrumptious bistro lunch, along with pairings such as cheese, tapas, and chocolate
    • Enjoy a relaxed day touring some of the best wineries in the region!
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    Brewshop 101: Home Beer Brewing Essentials

    Tired of having to run out to the store every time you want to relax and have a cold one? Then it’s time to learn the ABCs of home brewing! Starting with fundamental theory and materials, you’ll go over key terms and definitions, including extract brewing, malts, grains, and yeasts, as well as great techniques to brew your own craft beer. You will review the most common mistakes of home brewing and have the chance to taste a sample of good ol’ home brewed beer. Develop a deeper understanding of beer and its ingredients, and become a proficient home brewer and cultivated beer drinker!
    Brewshop 101: Home Beer Brewing Essentials

    700 Washington Ave, Brooklyn

    • Learn how to brew your own beer
    • Understand the techniques and fundamental theory behind home brewing
    • Learn how to avoid common mistakes
    • No experience necessary
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    18 positive reviews
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    Craft Beer Crawl -- Williamsburg

    This is a pub crawl with a purpose. It’s not your drunken St. Patty’s Day endeavor. If you love craft beer and gripe when a buddy orders a Bud Light, this tour explores your world. During the Craft Beer Crawl Williamsburg, you will embark on a journey through the best bars to serve your craft desires. Discover the history, how they’re made, serving style, and distinguishing characteristics to fully appreciate the artistry behind these delicious brews. The tour includes over 10 different beers plus a bit of grub. This beer revolution won’t be televised... it’ll be poured over and over again.
    Craft Beer Crawl -- Williamsburg

    Barcade, Brooklyn

    • Discover the history and distinguishing characteristics behind craft brews
    • Adventure to a collection of specialty pubs as you try over 10 different beers
    • Learn how craft beers are made, and what goes into serving each one
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    8 positive reviews

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