Like spicy food or distance running, whiskey is not a universally agreed-upon pleasure/pain. If it’s one of yours though, these five NYC bars each offer something distinctive and special. From a hidden gem to a whiskey education, we’ve got a destination on our list to please every stripe of whiskey aficionado.
The Flatiron Room, 37 West 26th Street (Flatiron/Chelsea District)
The Flatiron Room offers an astounding selection of whiskey and people who want to talk about whiskey, including the extremely knowledgeable staff. If you’d rather self-teach, or you just know what you like, The Flatiron Room is a sophisticated, laid back setting for slow sipping. For those who want to increase their appreciation and knowledge, the Flatiron Room’s schedule of evening whiskey courses (who doesn’t want to be sent to “Whiskey School?”) includes tasting classes designed for beginners (Whiskey 101) as well as for connoisseurs.
Maysville, 17th W. 26th Street, Between 6th Ave. and Broadway (Flatiron District)
If you like to buy American, right down to your whiskey, Maysville is for you. Named after a town in Kentucky where the first bourbon may (or may not) have been distilled, Maysville’s specialties are American whiskey (aka bourbon), bourbon cocktails and smoked, grilled and charred southern specialties to complement them. For a Kentucky-style Manhattan brunch, try a Smoked Chipotle Bloody Mary and crispy grits (braised pork, collard greens and sauce mornay).
Highlands, 150 W. 10th Street (West Village)
Highlands is your virtual trip across the pond to modern Scotland. The cuisine (high-end pub food) and setting are all Scotland and if single malt Scotch is your drink, this might just be your nirvana. For a date that isn’t a whisky fan, Highlands is also known for the Sweet Ginger Brown (ginger syrup, brown sugar, dark rum and muddled lime) and for its selection of Scottish beers.
Noorman’s Kil, 609 Grand Street, Brooklyn
Noorman’s Kil offers a great selection of whiskey (400+) and award-winning grilled cheese (seven gourmet options). Enough said.
Angel’s Share, 8 Stuyvesant Street, 2nd Floor (East Village)
Whiskey that evaporates during the barrel aging process is known as the “angel’s share.” If you don’t have boozy angels on your side, guiding you to this tucked away bar/speakeasy, it will help you to know that it’s behind a door at the back of Japanese restaurant Village Yokocho. Parties no larger than four people are admitted, only when there are seats available, and voices must be kept low. The atmosphere is a jazz and noir vibe perfect for sipping Japanese whiskeys you may not find anywhere else in the U.S. The Japanese craft cocktails are also worth savoring.
For a night cap, stop by The National for a specialty Chimney Sweeper – our spin on a classic Old Fashioned, infused with activated charcoal.
Looking for something else in New York City? You don’t have to wait for a blog post on the subject. The Benjamin’s concierge is always available to guide our guests to the very best of all things local.