New York

Catch the Halloween Spirit at These Spooky NYC Bars

Courtesy of The Cauldron
Courtesy of The Cauldron
Courtesy of The Cauldron

Remember when celebrating Halloween was as simple as slipping into a $12 costume from Party City, grabbing a pillowcase, and roaming the block with neighborhood kids in search of The Biggest Candy Bar? Now, as grown-ass adults in a city that knows how to party, trick-or-treating is out and the stakes are considerably higher. Costumes require weeks of preparation, events sell out quick, and Halloween-themed attractions are, like, actually terrifying.

Luckily, amidst the chaos that is Halloween in NYC, there are plenty of festive bars that you can take shelter in all week long: some with chilling pasts, some with extravagant decor, some with themed cocktails, all with Halloween spirit. So cut yourself some slack for waiting too long to buy House of Yes tickets this year and enjoy some old-fashioned debauchery. Here are the best watering holes in NYC for celebrating Halloween this week — because you’re going to need a few drinks to make it to November.

Rob W./Yelp
Rob W./Yelp
Rob W./Yelp

Jekyll & Hyde Club

West Village
Interactive barstaurant that’ll keep you on your toes

Dr. Jekyll (and friends) take guests on a journey through a faux 1930s Explorers Club at this frightening West Village outpost. Whether you reserve a seat for dinner or pop by for drinks at the bar, you’ll come face to face with live actors and high-budget special effects all contributing to the near-famous theatre experience. The club haunts guests year-round, but makes the biggest waves at Halloween time when guests come in costume too.

Cian LaHart
Cian LaHart
Cian LaHart

Fraunces Tavern

Financial District
A Founding Fathers favorite with present-day paranormal activity

The Pearl Street tavern once frequented by George Washington and Alexander Hamilton opened in 1762, and its rich history lends well to a number of purportedly paranormal occurrences still happening today. Through the years, the building’s played host to a series of misfortunes: a supposed murder/suicide in the 1700s, multiple fires in the 1800s, and a bombing in the 1970s. Grab a happy hour drink from 4-7pm on weekdays and wait for the chill of dwelling spirits.

Courtesy of Beetle House
Courtesy of Beetle House
Courtesy of Beetle House

Beetle House

East Village
Tim Burton-themed bar where Halloween never ends

Known as the bar where every day is Halloween, Beetle House is perhaps the most obvious place to grab an All Hallows’ drink. The macabre decor stays up all through the year, drawing inspiration from the work of Tim Burton and other creepy filmmakers and authors. Reservations are recommended for dinner service, but if you’re in it for the booze, just walk on in. Get a peek inside.

Paul Wagtouicz
Paul Wagtouicz
Paul Wagtouicz

Warren 77

Tribeca
The best Halloween hideout for NFL enthusiasts

Who said sports bars can’t have Halloween spirit? Warren 77 is decorated for the holiday all week long, but the best day to stop in is on Halloween proper. Screenings of The Shining and Silence of the Lambs kick off at 5pm, followed by Thursday Night Football at 8:20pm. Participate in the costume contest if you think you can steal the show, and be sure to try the “Boozed Up Blood,” a Jell-O shot in a syringe, available from October 31 to November 3.

Jason Andra
Jason Andra
Jason Andra

Black Rabbit

Greenpoint
Quaint Brooklyn bar that doesn’t even have to try

For a bar that isn’t Halloween-themed, Black Rabbit is so Halloween-themed. It’s old, it’s moody, it has candles and a fireplace; it looks like the kind of place the Headless Horseman would stop in for a drink after a long day of terrorizing angsty townsfolk. Black Rabbit doesn’t do anything special for Halloween, but that’s because it doesn’t need to. If you’re looking for a no-frills drinking spot straight out of a storybook, you’ve found it.

Courtesy of The Cauldron
Courtesy of The Cauldron
Courtesy of The Cauldron

The Cauldron

Financial District
Witchy wonderland brewing up boozy potions

It’s only fitting that a high-tech bar dedicated to all things magic would get extra witchy for Halloween. Wander through the autumnal coven’s lair this month and choose from any number of themed specialty cocktails, with cute names like Sweet Agony, Necromancers Delight, Elixir of Blood Loss, and Ectoplasm. Think you can stomach it?

Dan Dickinson/Flickr
Dan Dickinson/Flickr
Dan Dickinson/Flickr

Ear Inn

Hudson Square
Haunted 19th-century tavern nestled in a designated historic landmark

New Yorkers have been going to the James Brown House for liquor since before Prohibition; today, Ear Inn calls the historic building home along with a few “friendly” ghosts. Sit for a drink at the bar and see if you can catch Mickey, the ghost of a sailor whose ship never returned for him, stirring up trouble among the other patrons. Keep an eye on your drink though, or he just might sneak a swig!

Courtesy of Mr. Purple
Courtesy of Mr. Purple
Courtesy of Mr. Purple

Mr. Purple

Lower East Side
Halloween spirit seizes a swanky downtown rooftop

Mr. Purple’s no longer just a rooftop bar: From now through the end of the month, it’s been transformed into the Temple of Terror, a ghastly space with creepy cocktails, à la carte food options, live DJs, and city views. There’s no cover charge to enter the Temple, but if you’re piling in with a big group, you’d be smart to call 212-237-1790 and reserve a table.

Paranj P./Yelp
Paranj P./Yelp
Paranj P./Yelp

The Keep

Ridgewood
Goth as f*ck venue with an October 31st birthday

Will a visit to The Keep give you nightmares? Not quite. Will it weird you out? Definitely. The decor’s as extensive as can be, landing on a generally dark and gaudy vibe. This Halloween, the bar celebrates five years in business, making it an especially festive time to stop in for an evening drink. And if you’re looking to get wild, it’s hosting a neon body paint party on October 29 with a suggested donation upon entry.

Brian Logan Photography/Shutterstock
Brian Logan Photography/Shutterstock
Brian Logan Photography/Shutterstock

White Horse Tavern

West Village
Old writers’ hangout housing its own celebrity ghost 

Another historic pub, another rumored haunting; but what White Horse Tavern has that other rumored haunts don’t is the spirit of renowned poet Dylan Thomas. After drinking a few too many at the tavern one night, he collapsed and later died in a hospital. Even though he made it out of the bar alive, many claim he still hangs out at his favorite White Horse table trying to get his hands on another drink. There’s only one way to find out.Sign up here for our daily NYC email and be the first to get all the food/drink/fun New York has to offer.

Kyler Alvord is dressing as Guy Who Was Too Lazy to Plan an Outfit for Halloween again this year. See where he ends up celebrating on Instagram and Twitter. Or don’t. It’s really up to you.

New York

Scavenge for Peeps Cookies and More Fun Treats in NYC This Easter

The best Easter desserts in NYC this spring include Easter Bunny Churros and Carrot Cake Macarons.

Photo courtesy of Funny Face Bakery
Photo courtesy of Funny Face Bakery
Photo courtesy of Funny Face Bakery

As spring makes its way through New York City, not only do we get to enjoy beautiful weather, stunning cherry blossoms, and cool activities priced at $Free.99, but it’s also the perfect time for some limited-edition desserts.

With Easter fast approaching, bakeries are filling their shops with tons of chocolate eggs, carrot cake-flavoured everything and all types of flavours that offer both nostalgia and innovation within the city’s dessert landscape. After you’ve picked up a cake from the city’s best new bakeries, from Easter Bunny Churros to Carrot Cake Macarons, here are 8 Easter desserts to try in NYC right now.

Photo courtesy of Magnolia Bakery
Photo courtesy of Magnolia Bakery
Photo courtesy of Magnolia Bakery

Magnolia Bakery

Throughout April
Various locations
There’s great news for devotees of Magnolia Bakery’s Classic Banana Pudding: For Easter, the spot is mixing up the iconic dessert’s vanilla pudding with some carrot cake. The Carrot Cake Pudding is filled with freshly grated carrots, coconuts, pineapples, raisins, and walnuts. And if both bananas and carrots aren’t your thing, they’ll be offering their Classic Vanilla Cupcakes in pastel colours with a Cadbury chocolate egg hidden inside.

Photo courtesy of Funny Face Bakery
Photo courtesy of Funny Face Bakery
Photo courtesy of Funny Face Bakery

Funny Face Bakery

Through Easter Sunday
NoHo and Seaport
Known for their celebrity face and meme-worthy decorated cookies, fans of Funny Face Bakery know that a new fun design is always just around the corner. For Easter, they’ve created the adorable Hoppy Easter decorated cookie that resembles a classic box of marshmallow Peeps. Along with that, they also have the return of their fan-favourite Caramel Pretzel Chip cookie flavour, plus a set of three mini-decorated cookies perfect for gifting.

The Doughnut Project

Friday, April 7 through Easter Sunday
West Village
With the ever-changing flavours at The Doughnut Project, it’s super easy to miss out on trying out a new debut. But this Easter weekend, there will be two new flavours available. One is of course, a carrot cake doughnut topped with a cream cheese glaze, and the other is known as the Doughnut Nest-a French cruller “nest” with a cream-filled doughnut hole “egg” in the centre.

Photo by Cole Saladino, courtesy of The Fragile Flour
Photo by Cole Saladino, courtesy of The Fragile Flour
Photo by Cole Saladino, courtesy of The Fragile Flour

The Fragile Flour

Wednesday, April 5 through Easter Sunday
East Village
For stellar vegan desserts this holiday, head to The Fragile Flour, a plant-based bakery and dessert wine bar. They’re known for going all out for each holiday with a variety of new pastry options that you can pair perfectly with a glass of wine. This Easter, they’ll have a whole dessert menu that’s both delicious and gorgeous for posting on IG. The menu includes Stuffed Carrot Cake Cookies, a Lemon Cake (whole or by the slice), some festive cupcakes, and specialty macarons.

Photo courtesy of Kreuther Handcrafted Chocolate
Photo courtesy of Kreuther Handcrafted Chocolate
Photo courtesy of Kreuther Handcrafted Chocolate

Kreuther Handcrafted Chocolate

Through mid April
Midtown
For a luxurious take on Easter chocolates, browse the selections available at Kreuther Handcrafted Chocolate. You can even pick the Easter Signature Chef’s Selection for a special box curated by award-winning chefs. For something other than chocolate, choose between the Carrot Cake Macarons or the cake flavored Easter Marshmallow Trio, both of which are almost too cute to eat.

La Churreria

Throughout April
Nolita
This churro-centric spot is putting the cutest Easter spin on their crispy cinnamon churros by twisting them up into bunnies and bunny ears. At Churreria, choose from a Bunny Churro Lollipop topped with your choice of chocolate or dulce de leche and sprinkles, or the bunny ear churros in the Ube and Matcha ice cream sundae or the Ube Milkshake, both of which are made with ice cream from il laboratorio del gelato.

Photo by Briana Balducci
Photo by Briana Balducci
Photo by Briana Balducci

Lafayette

Throughout April
NoHo
You’ve surely seen this croissant tons of times while scrolling through IG or TikTok, whether it’s the Pain au Chocolat one or the latest of the month. Known as Supr√™mes, these filled croissants went viral and continue to live up to the hype each time a new flavour comes out. April’s flavour-sour cherry amaretto with a Luxardo custard and toasted almonds. While you’ll have to be super early and wait in line during one of their three drops of the day to get a taste, we promise you it’ll be worth it.

Photo courtesy of Levain
Photo courtesy of Levain
Photo courtesy of Levain

Levain

Seasonal
Various locations
We all know the iconic cookies from Levain-they’re gigantic, perfectly crispy and chewy, and well worth the long lines. For spring, the shop is launching a new flavour: Caramel Coconut Chocolate Chip. Filled with gooey caramel chips, fresh shredded coconut, and melty dark chocolate, it’s one you’ve got to try while it’s still around. To further celebrate the new season, all of Levain’s storefronts will be decked out in spring floral displays, serving as the perfect backdrop for pictures.

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Alaina Cintron is an Editorial Assistant at Thrillist. Her work can also be found in Westchester Magazine, Girls’ Life, and Spoon University. When she’s not at her desk typing away, you can find her exploring a local coffee shop or baking a new recipe.

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