Everyone has their go-to spots in their neighborhood that’s just right for every situation. There’s the after-work spot, the birthday party standby, the place with the best DJs. There’s a place that fulfills just about every need, but a crucial one in this age of modern internet love is the place you take all your Tinder dates. Sure, you could meet at any of your pre-ordained locations, but the best bar for these clandestine meetings is one that’s out of the way, very dark, and most importantly, one that you’re not going to see anyone you know. The drinks are strong, the bartenders are friendly and non-invasive, and you’re close enough to your house or subway line to beat a quick and hasty retreat, if need be. With these criteria in mind, here’s a rundown of some of our favorite spots in Williamsburg for meeting a stranger off the internet.
Over the Eight – 594 Union Ave
This dark, occasionally dance-y spot in Williamsburg meets all my Tinder bar criteria: it’s rarely crowded on a weeknight, it has good beers and solid drinks, and is far away enough from my usual haunts to insure that not a single person I know will see me out in a fancy dress on a Tuesday night.
Larry Lawrence – 295 Grand Street
The best thing about this bar is the enclosed smoking patio, situated in the back and above the cavernous main room, making it a prime spot for you to observe what your date is doing while you’re “going to the bathroom.” Also, it’s very dark, and boasts the unique feature of being unmarked from the outside, which is possibly a good deterrent from others finding it, maybe.
No Name Bar – 597 Manhattan Avenue
Like its sister from another mister, Larry Lawrence, No Name is also unmarked, but once you step inside, you’ll see that it’s the best spot for a lot of things, dates included. The reason it makes the cut here, however, is because it’s actually kind of romantic. It’s dark, cozy and full of little spots to sit very close with someone who is a near-stranger. If you really like your Tinder date, take ’em here.
Night of Joy – 667 Lorimer Street
Once you get here, you have two choices — head upstairs to the lovely patio where the awkwardness of your first date will surely dissipate into the clear night sky, or stay downstairs in the cozy, parlor-like atmosphere and get to know each other that way. Either are suitable, pleasant options.
Pinkerton Wine Bar – 263 North 6th Street
As a resident of this neighborhood, I never knew this place existed, but that’s most likely because wine makes me sleepy and I rarely drink it. I stumbled across it one night on a walk home, peeked my head in, and it’s kind of the best. It’s out of the way, it’s cozy, and they also have a variety of craft beers on tap and a strong cheese plate and charcuterie selection. If your Tinder-boo might be a keeper, this is the place to be.