Welcome to New York home of America’s
first brewery and first distillery. This city is jam-packed with great old places
to get your drink on. We’re going to go visit the five oldest right now. Our
first stop is down to the Financial District. Here we find the oldest bar in
the city, Fraunces Tavern. Opened in 1760 as the
Queen’s Head Tavern this bar was known as a bar for Patriots. John Adams,
Alexander Hamilton, and George Washington all tipped the glass here, so you’ll be
in good company. Upstairs is the museum – worth going through to really get the
sense of history of this storied place. Downstairs is an expansive bar, with
draught beer and lots and lots of whisky. Bonus check out the long room upstairs.
When George Washington retired from the army this is where he said goodbye to
his troops. From Fraunces we travel up Water Street until we dead-end at the
Brooklyn Bridge, and that’s where we find the second oldest bar, the Bridge Cafe.
This building was constructed in 1794 and has had a bar in it ever since. It
was also documented as a brothel in the mid and late 1800s. Calm down the
brothels gone. Serving sailors from nearby Southside Seaport
this place has seen some wild times. It’s even reportedly haunted upstairs from
the working girls who passed on but never seemed to leave. As a bonus this
bar is all about whiskey. Have them make you a rye Old Fashioned or try one of their
many bottles of Scotch or bourbon. Also don’t miss out on the food here. Next,
staying in lower Manhattan, we travel Northwest to Tribeca where we find the
James Brown House, and the third oldest bar in the city. Built by a Revolutionary
War veteran in 1817 the house was sold in the early 19th century to a saloon
owner and has been occupied by a tavern since 1835. Check out the bottles above
the bar, these were used to supply booze to passing ships on the Hudson River,
which at one time was just outside the front door. Today this place is a
favorite hangout for locals. On Friday it’s absolutely packed, but it’s also a
great time. The crowd was fun and the prices are some of the lowest you’ll
find in the city. As a bonus walk around the corner to
Hook and Ladder company number eight. You might recognize the building as the
headquarters of the Ghostbusters and the hit movie from 1984. We’re going to
head just north and into the Bwery right now where at one time these streets were
lined with bars and brothels for some of the city’s most poor and destitute. Yes
that’s a dead horse. Only one bar survived though, the fourth oldest bar,
McSorley’s Old Ale House. It was in 1854 when John McSorely founded his own bar
which is now one of the most popular old bars in the entire city. Stepping in is
like stepping back in time. The walls are lined with knickknacks accumulated after
almost two centuries of life in New York. The place gets crowded with locals and
tourists alike and as a good bet you’ll probably see a tour group or two pass
through while you’re here. They have a complete kitchen with great bar classics
and they serve only ale, light or dark, brewed from McSorley’s original recipe
that he brought with him from Ireland. Bonus don’t miss the chair above the old
freezer. Abraham Lincoln stood on it to give an impromptu speech out in the street.
North of McSorley’s we find the fifth oldest bar in New York City,
Pete’s Tavern. However, they wouldn’t let us film them ,so we’re not going to talk
about it. Instead we’re going to Greenwich Village to one of our favorite
classics, Old Town Bar. Founded in 1892 by a family of German immigrants this
place just oozes class. The long mahogany bar gets crowded just after quitting
time, and the place is frequented by professionals heading out after work. Try
to get one of the booths along the wall. during Prohibition they were used to
hide booze whenever the cops showed up. Bonus you’ve got to check out the
urinals! These babies were installed over 100 years ago and still look as fresh as
the first time they got used! Hey thanks for joining us on this bar crawl around
the Big Apple. You’ve now seen the five oldest bars, plus a bonus. Next time in
the city go to one or all these places and explore their history, and don’t
forget to pick up your copy of our book available wherever fine books are sold
for Bucket List Bars I’m Clint Lanier Cheers