Long Island City has come a long way from the desolate, super-industrialized Queens neighborhood it once was. Just one stop away from Manhattan on the 7 train, Long Island City is now home to plenty of noteworthy bars that’ll make it much easier to convince your Brooklyn friends to come visit.
From speakeasy-style cocktail bars to casual breweries, here’s the best bars in LIC.
Bars in Long Island City
Dutch Kills is the craft cocktail destination in Long Island City. Founded in 2009 by Richard Boccato and the late Sasha Petraske (both of Milk & Honey fame), Dutch Kills is known for its high-end cocktails and hand-cut ice. The drink menu is lengthy and diverse, featuring countless cocktails crafted with only fresh, premium ingredients, but patrons are also encouraged to opt for the bartender’s choice by selecting a base liquor and a flavor profile and letting the bartender work his or her magic. The dimly lit speakeasy-inspired space is perfect for date night.
27-24 Jackson Ave., 718-383-2724, dutchkillsbar.com
For drinks with a view, head to Penthouse 808, a 9,500-square-foot restaurant and lounge located atop luxury boutique hotel Ravel Hotel. The swanky indoor/outdoor rooftop is club-like with curtained cabanas and low-slung couches and boasts unbeatable views of Manhattan. The drinks complement the Hawaiian and Asian-inspired pacific rim fare, and the large-format cocktails served in smoking Tiki heads are perfect for groups to share.
8-08 Queens Plaza S., 718-289-6118, penthouse808rooftop.com
You won’t find any fancy specialty cocktails at LIC bar, but the storied establishment does offer a range of draft beers, basic mixed drinks and impressive selection of single-malt scotch — all served up in a relaxed, friendly environment. An antique wood bar, original tin ceilings and brick walls give the space a casual and homey feel, while the beautiful outdoor garden is perfect for a summer afternoon or evening. LIC Bar also hosts live music and is pet friendly.
45-58 Vernon Blvd., 718-786-5400, licbar.com
LIC Beer Project
LIC Beer Project is a must-visit for beer lovers or anyone looking for a fun, relaxed drinking experience. Located in a former warehouse, LIC Beer Project offers up a great selection of quality beers and is known for its IPAs and farmhouse-style ales. The spacious bar is great for groups, and there’s even corn hole boards to keep you entertained while you drink.
39-28 23rd St., 917-832-6840, licbeerproject.com
The Beast Next Door
When you’re looking for some tasty food to pair with your drinks, The Beast Next Door is the perfect choice with charcuterie and cheese plates, plus other shareable dishes to go with an impressive selection of signature cocktails, craft beer and wine. The wood-beam ceilings and reclaimed-wood tables give this low-lit space a warm, rustic feel, and the live music — often local musicians — makes The Beast Next Door a fun place for the LIC community to gather.
42-51 27th St., 718-482-7507, thebeastnextdoorcafebar.com
Cheap drinks and friendly staff and regulars are just a few of the reasons Dominie’s Hoek is a LIC favorite. This no-frills neighborhood bar is full of local art, and for entertainment, you’ll find board games and a jukebox rather than TVs. The backyard patio is also worth checking out if you want to soak up what’s left of summer.
48-17 Vernon Blvd., 718-706-6531, dominiesny.com