The beauty of being a whisky drinker in New York is that of being any sort of enthusiast in the city: Whether you seek experiences large or small, intimate or bustling, there is a corner, basement, rooftop, or lounge to suit.
Brooklyn is home to a lively urban distilling scene that is contributing to the statewide Empire Rye movement and gives New York its best approximation of a trail. Kings County Distillery has set up shop in the Navy Yard and features a tasting room and cocktail lounge. Further south, in Red Hook, Widow Jane shares a space with Cacao Prieto chocolate factory; a delicious pairing has never been easier. Breuckelen Distilling, Van Brunt Stillhouse, and New York Distilling Company round out the burgeoning whiskey scene.
New York’s celebrated nightlife extends to the whisky world as well with fancy cocktails and rare drams available at every turn. Brandy Library is perfect for a classy affair, while The Flatiron Room offers live music, food, flights, lockers, and more. Death & Co. and The Dead Rabbit, meanwhile, are the stuff of late night legend. Daytime libations are just as easy to come by, with Sanford’s Restaurant, in Astoria, serving up brunch alongside over 300 whiskies.
No city offers the sheer volume of options to the whisky lover, and no event captures all of it quite like WhiskyFest New York. Astor Wines & Spirits and Park Avenue Liquors are two shops that offer an abundant selection of whiskies (and other spirits, too). Secret spots abound in the city that never sleeps, so no matter what you’ve seen or tasted in the past, a new experience awaits.
Five Key Whisky Spots in New York
Death & Co.
The kind of secretive and sophisticated cocktail bar where seats and stories are at a premium.
Kings County Distillery
With a distillery and cocktail lounge in the Brooklyn Navy Yard, it’s a must-hit in the borough’s growing craft scene.