The Best Dive Bars in Brooklyn

irishhaven copy
Irish Haven
5721 Fourth Avenue, Sunset Park
When the old owner sold the place a few years back, you couldn’t smoke inside anymore or stay there drinking whiskeys well past sun-up. But that was Bloomberg’s New York for you; we were just happy they kept the inside the same—and, for that matter, the outside, which is blocky with small windows, even though it has a coveted corner spot. Like the other Sunset Park bar at the top of this list, the crowd here feels made up of the last bunch of white European Catholic holdouts in this part of the neighborhood, which has otherwise become thoroughly Latino. (Or maybe they’re ringers who walk down from Bay Ridge?) One of the first times we stumbled in here, a traditional Irish song was on the jukebox but was then quickly skipped in favor of something from the Dirty Dancing soundtrack. If that doesn’t sum up the state of Brooklyn dive bars, we don’t know what will.


  1. “There are very few actual ‘dive bars’ left in most of Brooklyn”

    “Most” might be a bit of a stretch. I’m sure there are bars in Canarsie, Flatbush, Bensonhurst, Brownsville, Marine Park, and they aren’t fancy places either.

  2. I didn’t see a fairly new bar called American Cheez (which they are listed on Yelp as a dive bar) on your list. Is the age of a bar required to be considered a “dive bar”? American Cheez is far from being fancy. I think your reporter should check it out. 🙂 I love the place. To me it’s a great neighborhood bar when you can even run into some of the same people and the bartender buys back which is very rare these days.

  3. nope. wrong. they are all terrible, but especially the Soccer, the Haven, the Pigeon, RnB, Shenanigans, and Denny’s. Really, really terrible. Stay away.

    obvious joke is obvious, but really. don’t come.

  4. Love the list of Bars, but you left a few off of your list. Bullseye Sports Pub in Marine park.
    Every Sunday they have free hot food for their patrons, every major holiday is celebrated with a huge party, thirteen tvs and a jumbo screen for any game you’d like, they play host to the Gotham dart leagues, soft ball teams and even sponsor children’s sports teams.
    Every couple of months the Bar hosts a NYHC music lineup for it’s musical patrons, every Christmas a comedy show with well known comedians is put on for free as a gift to the patrons of the Bar. Toys for tots drives, charity drives for individuals and for entire community’s are done whenever they are needed.
    I know that you’ve done your research on the bars that are featured, and that they are all great in their own way. Next time just take a look at a couple more.


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