Gastropub – now there’s a term we didn’t have ten years ago. Gastropubs, by definition, are watering holes which also serve high quality food. Think about how important it is to have food at your favorite bar, just to soak up the booze. And as more of us become gourmets, our radar for excellent food gets sharper. Add to that the hope for late night ordering and voila: my list for watering holes that feed your soul while the spirits are flying. By Anna Van Lenten.

Dillingers Pub & Grill

(credit: Dillinger's)

46-19 30th Ave
Astoria, NY 11103
(718) 956-5601

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Great prices at this homestyle pub are lockstep with quality, which is excellent. Plus, you can order until 3 a.m. on weekends. Steak night is a must: juicy grilled skirt steak with fluffy, garlicky mashed potatoes–$10! Empty your penny jar and head over on $.25 wing night for spicy, lip-lickin’ wings—both the garlic and the hot version—just saucy enough and sufficiently meaty.

Dominie’s Hoek

(credit: Dominie's Hoek)

4817 Vernon Boulevard
Long Island City, NY 11356
(718) 706-6531

Long Island City’s most especial local watering hole, Dominie’s is fervently beloved by many for its laid-back vibe, super hip jukebox and great grub. Of note are the California grilled chicken sandwich, the top-drawer fries, guacamole & chips, succulent burger, and the steak sandwich. High ceilings, a garden in the back for clement-weather relaxing, and board games set the stage for ineffably perfect nights.


The Frico Croccante at Gottino (credit: Gottino)

52 Greenwich Avenue
New York, NY 10079
(212) 633-2590

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Repose and take your time in Gottino’s relaxed, low-pitched space. This gastroteca—the chef’s made-up word for an Italian pub—underscores its quiet environment with fresh, satisfying fare—brunch especially. Steamed eggs with prosciutto or smoked salmon, slow-roasted baby pork, and rafts of wonderful cheeses with chutneys and tapenades will delight.

Jimmy’s No. 43

(credit: Jimmy's No. 43)

43 E. 7th St., New York, NY 10003
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Descend to the gothic-arched basement for an interesting list of great brews and richly flavored dishes produced by a small, by-the-seat-of-its-pants kitchen. All parts and products of pig and cow are worshiped—pork belly, veal cheeks, butter-poached clams and Gruyere pastry. But tasty fiddle-head ferns, fingerling potatoes, and asparagus make appearances too.


(credit: Sunswick/Facebook)

3502 35th Street
Astoria, NY 11106
(718) 752-0620

Sunswick’s simple space sports exposed brick walls, a handsome bar, and a lively, relaxed feel. One could pass many an evening exploring the 25 draft beers alone, but the hidden gems on the menu should not be overlooked. Top-notch sandwiches and burgers, fresh mozzarella sticks, wings a’ dripping with heat and sauce, spinach artichoke dip, and sweet potato fries are all worth one’s while. And Karaoke night is Thursday.

The Breslin

(credit: The Breslin)

20 W 29th Street
New York, NY 10001
(212) 679-1939
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Eclectically, beautifully outfitted, the ample space here presents endless architectural details and nooks to weave your gaze on as you are attended to by Breslin’s efficient staff. The indulgent, distinctive menu centers on an “intense meat program”—divine housemade sausages, a lamb burger to return for. And don’t forget desserts – notably, the Ciabbata doughnuts with vanilla cognac.

The Redhead

(credit: The Redhead/Facebook)

349 E 13th Street
New York, NY 10003
(212) 533-6212

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This cozy, unpretentious East Village cave serves up extravagant, delicious comfort food: Waffle chips with onion dip? Check. Juicy, crispy fried chicken to die for? Check. Bacon peanut brittle? But of course. Low country shrimp and grits (with sausage)? Beyond. Affable staff? Ditto.

The Sparrow Tavern

(file photo credit: Clipart)

24-01 29th Street
Astoria, NY 11102
(718) 606-2260
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Sparrow’s menu will please both gourmands and comfort foodies alike. Its hipster, last-minute décor combines nicely with a local, take-it-easy rhythm. A creative beer selection and fine wine list offers something for everyone. Many claim Sparrow’s as the best burger in NYC. Nip into the pulled pork sandwich, the mac ‘n cheese, and from the brunch menu, Greek yogurt sprinkled with cinnamon, honey, thyme, and walnuts.

The Spotted Pig


314 W 11th Street
New York, NY 10014
(212) 620-0393
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The fun of this pub begins with their creative, delicious drinks, ebullient patrons, and friendly service. The menu pledges a deep devotion to all things porcine and scrumptious. For good reason, the ricotta gnudi are legendary. And who’s eating that fried pig’s ear with lemon caper dressing? But that’s you, my dear! No worries, the wonderful deviled eggs and chicken liver toast will bring you back to earth.

Dirty Pierre

(file photo credit: Clipart)

15 Continental Avenue
Forest Hills, NY 11375
(718) 830-9698

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Ambiance at Dirty Pierre’s is French quarter and due to the small space, intimate. The Bistro Burger is mouth-watering and pushes the envelope a bit when you get it with goat cheese and shallot toppings. All you can eat mussels—delectable mussels–in a spicy, garlicky wine broth, and the quesadilla too, are home runs. And, shoestring fries are perfect.