Where to Find Great Cocktails in Downtown Brooklyn

by Sonie Guseh on Dec 13, 2016 in Roundups

The beloved borough of Brooklyn is home to Coney Island, immense cultural diversity, and plenty of places to find a good brew, wine, or cocktail. At the heart of the borough is Downtown Brooklyn, located right across the bridge from Manhattan’s Lower East Side. While considered by many to be much more low key than the LES, Downtown Brooklyn is still a vibrant neighborhood full of activity. Below is a list of places in the neighborhood to grab a drink.

With authentic Mexican tastes and vibrant, colorful decor, Rocco’s Tacos and Tequila Bar offers a wide array of drinks.  If you stop in you can try 12 different types of margaritas, including pomegranate, strawberry basil, and blood orange. You might also consider creating your own mojito, or you may want to try the Casamigos Lemonade (Casamigos blanco, muddled lemons, agave nectar, and club soda) or Brandie’s Skinny Senorita (Blanco, Fresh Squeezed Lime Juice, Agave Nectar, Splash of Soda Water). Yum. (339 Adams St.; 718-246-8226)
 
Delicious cocktails and rustic vibes make Livingston Manor a great option for a post-work drink. The bar touts a daily happy hour from 4 PM - 7 PM, offering $2 off drafts and $1 off wine. When you visit, sip on the Moon Laso (King County Lavender Moonshine, Creme de Violette, Maraschino, Lemon) or the Take Your Time (Dorothy Parker gin, Lillet blanc, Genepy des alpes, orange bitters, and blood orange cube). Livingston Manor also offers a nice variety of wines, including sparkling and sherry. (42 Hoyt St.; 347-987-3292)
 
Located just blocks away from the sports and entertainment happening at the Barclays Center, Brooklyn Brewhouse makes for a solid pre-game spot before heading over for a show or game, or you can settle in at the bar and watch a live event there. Taste one of 14 drafts and 40 beers -- local, craft, and imported -- or one of its many cocktail options. (229 Duffield St.; 718-254-7813)
 
DuckDuck’s strong neighborhood vibe and familiar, friendly feel is just right for a night out with friends or a low-key Saturday afternoon out. The bar has a rustic vibe with exposed, worn brick alongside a wooden bar. Test out some of the bar’s seasonal cocktails like the Southern Belle (firefly sweet tea vodka, fresh mint, and muddled lemon), Aw Gingersnap! (Absolut Brooklyn, ginger ale, and Fee Brothers Bitters), or the Kentucky Greyhound (Jim Beam, fresh mint, grapefruit juice). (153 Montrose Ave.; 347-799-1449)
 
House of Wax is quite the two-in-one combination — it’s a bar that also doubles as a wax museum. The wax museum features gruesome, macabre exhibitions, and the bar area is full service, with beverages inspired by the museum’s theme. If you fancy a little horror with your happy hour experience, get a two-for visit and test out the fruit-filled Venus (Owney’s Rum, orange, passion fruit, guava, pineapple, lemon, orgeat, and sparkling wine), the Lolita Nymph (Brooklyn gin, orange and basil shrub, and orange blossom), or the Butcher of Hanover (Fernet branca, Capano Antica Formula, lemon, IPA, and Angostura), and prepared to be spooked. (445 Albee Sq. W #4410; 929-382-5403)
 
The Dining Room is a classic bar scene with a creative menu. Check out its daily happy hour and regular specials, including $4 draft beers, mystery cocktails on Mondays, discounted tequila drinks on Tuesdays, and $2 whiskey pours on Wednesdays. Beat the Sunday blues with the bar’s all day happy hour to start the week off right. (56 Willoughby St.; 718-488-8902)
 
This Japanese eatery features a full sake bar, so sip on one of 15 types of premium sakes on the menu while partaking in some sushi and sashimi to round out the palate. Try the Suijin Junmai (“Water Dragon, God of Water”), which the restaurant describes as a “full body and super dry sake” or the Masumi Okuden Junmai (“Mirror of Truth”), which the menu notes as having a “soft nose of mixed berries, melon, and earth tones” and “semi-floral.” Jun Shokudo also features a wide assortment of wine and Japanese beer, including the Asahi Super Dry and the Asahi Kuronama Black, both from Tokyo. (306 Gold St. #C2; 718-855-0988)
 
Photo via Flickr user See-ming Lee 李思明 SML
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