NYC’s Best Winter Cocktails and Coziest Bars

  • 01 of 04

    TINY’S: Tiny’s Old Fashioned

    Tiny's Old Fashioned
    ••• Rittenhouse Rye, Demerara, Maraschino Cherries, Fig Bitters. Frank J. Young

    A venerable neighborhood restaurant and bar, located in a historic three story townhouse, Tiny’s is a true TriBeCa gem. On any given night, you may find yourself rubbing elbows with everyone from local families and happy hour regulars to under-the-radar A-list celebs and groups of Swedish tourists, eager to support fellow countrymen and hockey legend, Henrik Lundquist, one of Tiny’s co-owners.    

    Conceived by siblings Matt, Jack and Ana Abramcyk as an inviting space where guests can relax and enjoy delicious food, wine and cocktails, Tiny’s will instantly enchant you with its snug, low-lit dining room featuring original tin ceilings and a wood burning fireplace and the recently redesigned “Bar Upstairs” – the ideal spot to snuggle up and enjoy a whimsical collection of original cocktails. And if you’re fortunate enough to have Kyle as your bartender, you’ll soon feel like a Tiny’s regular even if it’s your first visit. Thanks to his quick wit and knack for making spot-on drink...MORE recommendations, Kyle will push your drink palette to new and glorious heights with popular favorites like Servando’s Revenge, Bon Vivant and King Henrik.  

    But as so many patrons can attest, Tiny’s most tried-and-true cocktail, hands down, is their Old Fashioned. Just when you thought this American classic couldn’t get any better, Tiny’s ups the ante with fig bitters and figs that have undergone “fig therapy” – i.e. soaked in rye, Demarara sugar and “a little attitude” for 2 weeks up to 3 months. 

    135 West Broadway, New York, NY 10013; phone (212) 374-1135; website: tinysnyc.com

    Continue to 2 of 4 below.
  • 02 of 04

    BOBO: Trio of Hot Drinks

    Bobo's Trio of Hot Drinks
    ••• Left to right: Bobo Royale, Haymaker’s Punch, Gin’ger Rummy. Sheree Wu

    Nestled in an elegant Greenwich Village townhouse that dates back to the early 1900s, Bobo sets the perfect stage to enjoy craft cocktails and petit plats in the subterranean bar/lounge or to cuddle up for a romantic French dinner at the upstairs restaurant. No matter how you choose to experience Bobo, the convivial staff will make you feel right at home while the warm, bohemian-chic ambiance will entice you to settle in for the night.

    And thanks to beverage consultant Jason Schell, the brain child behind a recent series of creatively flavored Bobo Bloody Mary’s, guests can now treat themselves to a new trio of signature hot drinks. As a child growing up in Missouri, Jason often enjoyed Switchel, a mixture of water, vinegar and ginger that was a traditional drink for farmers during hay harvest season. Inspired by Switchel’s tart and pungent flavor – and its recent emergence in the beverage industry – he created three hand-crafted cocktails that blend Switchel with a variety of liquors...MORE and house made ingredients:

    The light and fresh Gin’ger Rummy (Flor de Cana Rum, mint syrup and mint leaf garnish), the boldly flavored Haymaker’s Punch (Dewars with rosemary syrup, served with a lemon wheel and rosemary sprig garnish) and the smooth and citrusy Bobo Royale (Louis Royer Cognac and Cointreau with ginger syrup and an orange wheel garnish), which is the perfect night cap.

    181 W 10th St, New York, NY 10014; phone (212) 488-2626; website: bobonyc.com/ 

    Continue to 3 of 4 below.
  • 03 of 04

    THE UP & UP: False Witness

    False Witness cocktail
    ••• Whistle Pig Rye, Atlantico Reserve Rum, Jägermeister, Grappa, Pistachio Orgeat, and Nutmeg. Matt Piacentini

    Conceived by owner Matt Piacentini as a neighborhood bar that would truly represent its namesake (honest; fair; trustworthy), The Up & Up is a welcome addition to Greenwich Village and the specialty cocktail scene. After descending an inconspicuous staircase marked by a Cocktail and down arrow sign, guests will find themselves transported into a stylish and funky den adorned with soft brown leather banquettes, marble topped cocktail tables, William Morris wallpaper and cheeky vintage ads-cum-artwork.  A refreshing twist on the speakeasies that have popped up all over the city, The Up & Up provides a sophisticated space to sample expertly-crafted cocktails, while still maintaining an approachable attitude that will never make you feel like you’re not cool enough to be there.

    With head bartender, Chaim Dauermann, to guide you on your journey, be prepared to experience distinctive and thoughtfully-blended flavor combinations. From his humble beginnings experimenting with mixed...MORE drinks in the kitchen of a large rambling mansion he shared with five roommates in Arcata, CA to bartending and beverage director gigs at places like 'inoteca liquori bar, Gin Palace and Desnuda, Chaim has honed his skills and knowledge of what cocktail aficionados want. And his visions are particularly clear with drinks like the False Witness, which was inspired by his desire to create a cocktail that could be served hot or cold – much like the childhood favorite, chocolate milk, but with an obvious adult kick. The result is a warm and comforting blend of rye and rum with vaguely fruity notes and subtle richness.

    Two other Up & Up fan favorites are the Hailstone (Virgil Kaine Robber Baron Rye, Cream, Orange Juice, Mace, and Orange Flower) and Screen Door Slam (Maker’s Mark Bourbon, Aperol, Honey, Vanilla Bean, and Absinthe).   

    The Up & Up: 116 MacDougal Street, New York, NY 10012; (212) 260-3000; upandupnyc.com

    Continue to 4 of 4 below.
  • 04 of 04

    THE GARRET (WEST): Black Alps

    Black Alps cocktail
    ••• Rittenhouse Rye, Pur Blood Orange, Cynar, Orange Oil. The Garret

    Surreptitiously tucked above a Five Guys Burgers in the heart of the West Village, The Garret West is one of the newer bars on the block (opened in April 2014), but has fast become a neighborhood favorite. For the uninitiated, the journey through Five Guys and up a back staircase will lead you to a snug and stylish lounge on the second floor. With massive skylights, white washed brick walls, rustic wood banquettes, funky artwork and a long bar flanking the entire left wall, the Garret is equal parts hip and laid back.

    With Beverage Director Grant Wheeler at the helm, you can expect a creative, seasonally-inspired cocktail menu that he says keeps up with market trends, but is still accessible and tailored to what guests ask for. And his top recommendation for a winter cocktail, the Black Alps, certainly hits the mark with orange and bittersweet notes evocative of a classic Negroni, but with a much edgier feel thanks to the warm and bold rye spices from the Rittenhouse.  Another must-try...MORE cocktail is The Espinoza, made with Plantation White Rum, Fidencio Classic Mexcal, Banana Liqueur, All-Spice Dram, Lemon, Egg White and Angostura.  And The First Lady and Spicy Tequila Number have been hugely popular with patrons.

    296 Bleecker Street, 2nd Floor, New York, NY 10014; phone (212) 675-6157; website: thegarretwest.com