Updated at: 09-06-2023 - By: John Lau

Welcome to the vibrant nightlife of West Village, NYC! This charming Manhattan neighborhood is home to an eclectic mix of cozy wine bars, trendy rooftop hangouts, and world-renowned cocktail establishments.

In this blog post, we’ve carefully curated a list of 11 must-visit bars in the heart of West Village that will satisfy your every libation desire. From award-winning speakeasies to unique date night spots tailored for singles and couples alike, there’s something for everyone.

Top 11 Bars In West Village NYC

Employees Only

Employees Only

As a seasoned nightlife enthusiast in the West Village, I can’t stop raving about Employees Only, one of the top  bars around. Nestled behind a psychic’s reading den, it has been consistently hailed as an iconic speakeasy bar and named the World’s Best Cocktail Bar with the World’s Best Drink Selection.

When you step into Employees Only for a fun night out, you can expect extraordinary cocktails crafted by expert mixologists who know just how to please your taste buds.

This highly recommended bar has been featured in publications like Infatuation and The Hottest New Cocktail Bars in New York City.

The Up & Up

One of my favorite stops in the West Village’s upscale bar scene has to be The Up & Up. This intimate cocktail bar offers some of the most creative craft cocktails I’ve ever tried, definitely a testament to NYC’s thriving mixology scene.

The moment I stepped into The Up & Up, I was captivated by its charming ambiance and meticulously curated atmosphere – perfect for both singles bars’ seekers and date night enthusiasts alike.

With happy hour specials that would satisfy even the most discerning of palates, there’s no denying that this gem is among the best bars in West Village NYC.

The Blind Tiger Ale House

The Blind Tiger Ale House

The Blind Tiger Ale House, nestled in the historic West Village of NYC, is a must-visit for any craft beer enthusiast. As part of the best bars in this iconic area, it has earned its place among the best with an impressive selection of 28 rotating draughts, 3 cask selections and over 50 bottle options from a wide range of microbreweries.

I remember my first visit to the Blind Tiger fondly; upon walking through their doors, I was immediately greeted by friendly bartenders who were more than happy to offer suggestions from their extensive menu.

The laid-back atmosphere provided by both the staff and fellow patrons made it easy to relax and truly enjoy my time there.

The Garret

If you’re in the West Village and looking for a hidden gem to grab some craft cocktails, The Garret is definitely worth checking out. Tucked away above Five Guys Burgers and Fries, this speakeasy-style bar has a cosy atmosphere with dark decor and dim lighting.

It can be difficult to find if you’re not specifically searching for it, but once you do, it’s like discovering an upscale lounge that only the locals seem to know about.

Unique experiences await as bartenders create delicious drinks tailored to your taste buds while you snack on some of Five Guys’ famous burgers from downstairs.

It’s no wonder why The Garret is included in several guides listing the best bars in NYC overall and remains a favorite among those who know where to look for true nightlife adventures.

The Fat Cat

The Fat Cat

The Fat Cat NYC is a popular hangout spot for those who love table gameslive jazz music, and a unique ambiance.

Located in the basement of an unassuming building, this venue offers pool tables, ping pong tables, board games and even shuffleboard to its patrons.

Tourists from all over make it a point to visit The Fat Cat when they’re looking for something different than the usual bar scene. Although it may not be easy going down the precarious stairs leading into the basement, visitors never regret making that trip once they’re inside.

Overall The Fat Cat is one of those bars you just have to go see for yourself – a true tourist attraction and known worldwide as one of the best bars in West Village NYC!

The Rusty Knot

As an avid bar-goer and lover of dive bars, The Rusty Knot in West Village NYC is a personal favorite. This neighborhood spot features nautical decor, complete with fish tanks and ship paintings that transport you to another world.

Located off the beaten path on Hudson Street, The Rusty Knot feels like a local hangout and not just another nightlife spot. It’s the kind of place where you can come as you are and enjoy some quality drinks without any pretense or stuffiness.

Cafe Wha?

I absolutely love Cafe Wha? It’s a legendary music club located in the heart of Greenwich Village, Manhattan. Since 1959, Cafe Wha? has offered live music to New York City locals and visitors.

The bands that showcase their talents at this venue cover a variety of genres that keep everyone entertained all night long.

Not only does Cafe Wha? have amazing live music, but it also has an impressive history. Legendary musicians like Jimi Hendrix, Bruce Springsteen, and Bob Dylan began their careers at this venue.

The Happiest Hour

The Happiest Hour

I must start by saying that The Happiest Hour is truly one of the best bars in West Village, NYC. As someone who enjoys a good cocktail after a long day, I can attest to their amazing variety of drinks and happy hour specials.

But what really sets this bar apart is its food menu – specifically, its burgers.

Another great thing about The Happiest Hour is its late-night snacks menu. When those midnight cravings hit, they have you covered with everything from fries to nachos to chicken tenders.

And all while surrounded by a fun and lively atmosphere that just screams “New York City”.

Sake Bar Satsko

As someone who appreciates great bar culture, I highly recommend Sake Bar Satsko in the East Village. This place serves up some of the best izakaya-inspired Japanese cuisine and sake selections around.

If you’re into craft beer bars in New York, Sake Bar Satsko won’t disappoint either. They have a fantastic selection of local brews on tap. While there are plenty of high-end restaurants in West Village NYC, sometimes all you need is a good drink with some amazing small plates to round out your night.

Orient Express

Orient Express

One of the must-visit bars in West Village NYC for alcoholism enthusiasts is Orient Express Cocktail Bar. This unique bar, inspired by the legendary passenger train, offers a one-of-a-kind experience with its elegant and vintage decor.

Sloane Crosley considers this hidden gem as her secret favorite spot in West Village due to its intimate ambiance perfect for a romantic date night or catching up with friends.

With an impressive rating of 4.5 out of 5 on TripAdvisor, it’s no wonder why Orient Express Cocktail Bar continues to draw crowds looking for craft cocktails in a trendy yet cozy atmosphere.


As someone who loves to explore the West Village bar scene, I highly recommend checking out Analogue. As a neighborhood bar, it has a cozy and intimate atmosphere that is perfect for a night out or date night.

But don’t let the vintage look fool you – Analogue also offers craft cocktails that are truly innovative and creative. With an extensive cocktail menu to choose from, it’s hard not to find something that suits your taste buds perfectly.


The West Village is the perfect neighborhood for a night out on the town, with its endless choices of top-rated bars. Whether you’re looking for a cozy spot to sip wine or a trendy cocktail lounge to impress your date, this area of NYC has it all.

From Blind Tiger Ale House to Sake Bar Satsko, we’ve compiled the ultimate list of 11 Best Bars in West Village that are sure to satisfy any type of bar-goer.