You might find yourself in need of a drink in Midtown Manhattan for any number of reasons — maybe you’re killing time before a date or after a Broadway show, or just feel a certain draw toward crowds of tourists or business people in embroidered fleece vests. Whatever your justification, there are more than a few watering holes to choose from in this part of town, and settling into the bar at the wrong spot is likely to cost you a pretty penny for a fairly mediocre drink.

To save your wallet — and spirit — we’ve rounded up the best places to drink in Midtown Manhattan.

Best Place to See and Be Seen: Pebble Bar

Pebble Bar is one of the best places to drink in Midtown Manhattan
Credit: Pebble Bar NYC

If you haven’t yet heard of Pebble Bar, well, where have you been? This buzzy townhouse in Rockefeller Center is beloved by “Saturday Night Live” cast members past and present (the bar was previously called Hurley’s, an iconic bar that shuttered in 2000), as well as celebrities, influencers, and those aspiring to be any of the above. Three stories of leather banquettes, standing tables, and a dazzling oyster bar make Pebble Bar an incredibly easy place to spend the entire night. Order a Martini or three, bring a few friends, and cozy up to a seafood tower.

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Tip Jar: Johnny’s, located on the top floor of Pebble Bar, is already becoming the hot spot for private parties.


Address: 67 W 49th St, New York, NY 10112

Best Place to Feel Like You’re Not in Midtown: Lodi

Lodi is one of the best places to drink in Midtown Manhattan
Credit: Lodi NYC

If more restaurants in this part of town felt like Lodi, we’d all be here more often. Part bakery, part Art Deco café, all delicious, the newest spot from the same team responsible for lower Manhattan mainstays Estela and Café Altro Paradiso is a charming ode to Italian aperitivo culture. In particular, the Marsala Cobbler cocktail with gin, pomegranate, lemon, and dry Marsala is an unexpected tart treat, and pairs perfectly with the chicken salad panini for a luxurious lunch.

Tip Jar: The reserve wine list focusing on classic Italian regions is well worth checking out if you’re stopping by for dinner or a special occasion.

Address: 1 Rockefeller Plaza, New York, NY 10020


Best Place for Drinking With a Group: Iris

Iris is one of the best places to drink in Midtown Manhattan.
Credit: Iris Restaurant NYC

Chef John Fraser knows a thing or two about vegetables (his now-shuttered Michelin-starred spot Nix catered to omnivores, but was equally beloved by meat eaters), but as it turns out, he can also be trusted to make a really great drink — or, at least, team up with beverage director Amy Racine to do so. At Iris, you’ll find plenty of large tables for post-work gatherings or birthdays, and the drinks draw inspiration from the restaurant’s Mediterranean roots. Try the mastic-infused Martini for a boldly Aegean twist on the classic, or discover your next favorite Greek varietal.

Address: 1740 Broadway, New York, NY 10019


Best Place for People Who Are Really Into Wine: Aldo Sohm Wine Bar

Also Sohm Wine Bar is one of the best places to drink in Midtown Manhattan
Credit: Aldo Sohm Wine Bar

As the sommelier of Michelin-starred Le Bernardin, one might worry that Aldo Sohm’s taste in wines would be unapproachable and esoteric. His eponymous wine bar (located around the corner from the restaurant) proves just the opposite, toting a vast by-the-glass list that includes nearly 40 offerings, from a $15 Finger Lakes Riesling to a $75 glass of reserve white Burgundy. It’s a buzzy spot that channels the neighborhood’s pulse by encouraging guests to order a flight of wines they’ve yet to try under the guidance of a very knowledgeable (and friendly!) staff.

Tip Jar: Can’t make it to the bar yet, but want to know what Aldo’s all about? His book, “Wine Simple,” is a fantastic guide to the basics of wine that you’ll use as a reference time and time again.

Address: 151 W 51st St, New York, NY 10019


Best Place to Take Your Parents: Keens

Keens is one of the best places to drink in Midtown Manhattan.
Credit: Keens

It’s hard to talk about the Midtown dining and drinking scene without a nod to Keens, which has been going strong in the neighborhood since 1885. In addition to serving up classic steakhouse fare for lunch and dinner, Keens is the place to go for a serious Martini or Manhattan in Midtown –– no funky riffs or Instagram gimmicks, here. There’s also a solid wine list featuring a whole lot of Cabernet Sauvignon, as well as some less expected bottles, which they’re more than happy to dig through the cellar for. Come for the wood wall paneling that feels truly out of another century (because it is), stay for the shrimp cocktail.

Address: 72 W 36th St., New York, NY 10018


Best Place to Drink While You’re Waiting for a Train: The Campbell Bar

The Campbell Bar is one of the best places to drink in Midtown Manhattan.
Credit: The Campbell NYC

Despite the chaotic hustle that comes with any commuter hub, Grand Central can be a magical place, and the Campbell Bar is a great example of why. With Florentine-inspired architecture and a stunning stone fireplace, this is a perfect spot to kill some time (but, you know, in a fancy way) before catching the Metro North. We’re especially fond of the cold brew Martini, which will absolutely prevent you from falling asleep and missing that stop.

Address: 15 Vanderbilt Ave, New York, NY 10017


Best Place for a Drink Before a Show: The Rum House

The Rum House is one of the best places to drink in Midtown Manhattan.
Credit: The Rum House NYC

There is a host of places in Midtown where you can get a drink or two before catching a Broadway show, but the Rum House, located inside the Edison Hotel, is a stand-out pick. With an (obviously) extensive rum cocktail list as well as well-attended jazz piano performances, it’s a lively and nostalgia-inducing spot in the heart of Times Square.

Address: 228 W 47th St, New York, NY 10036


Best Old-School Dive Bar: Jimmy’s Corner

Jimmy's Corner is one of the best places to drink in Midtown Manhattan.

For a truly no-frills drinking experience, Jimmy’s Corner, just off of bustling Times Square on 44th street, is the place to go. Beloved by locals and the post-work crowd, the Midtown establishment hasn’t changed much since it opened in 1971, and that’s part of its charm. Stick to beers, shots, and well drinks here (as in, please don’t order wine) and you’ll fit right in.

Address: 140 W 44th St, New York, NY 10036