Top 6 Bars in Upper East Side NY

The Upper East Side of New York City, known worldwide for its wealth and charm, houses an astonishing array of fashionable bars that exude elegance and sophistication. From iconic, classy, martini-serving hotspots to hidden speakeasies behind unmarked doors, the area brims with an intoxicating blend of history and modernity. Its charismatic energy and refined sense of luxury make it an undeniable benchmark for high-end nightlife. Dive right in, you’re just on the brink of discovering a chic blend of traditional and trendy cocktail havens that huddle behind the breathtaking architecture of UES, NY.

The right bar can transform a regular evening into a remarkable one and when it comes to the Upper East Side, the options are as diverse as they are enticing. These palatial watering holes are perfectly poised between innovation and heritage, maintaining an intimate ambiance despite New York’s hustling lifestyle. Now, get ready for a scenic tour of the top six bars in this esteemed locale, each exuding their respective charm and offering the best in class beverages and services. Whichever you choose to visit, rest assured you’ll be in for a memorable encounter with the city’s finest spirits.

Top Bars in Upper East Side NY

1. Bemelmans Bar

Nestled within The Carlyle hotel, Bemelmans Bar stands out with its historic charm and captivating murals created by artist Ludwig Bemelmans. It’s a beacon of classic New York sophistication, offering live jazz nights that complement its fine selection of cocktails in a setting that speaks volumes of old-world elegance. The bar’s ambiance is enhanced by its artistic murals, making each visit a journey through a timeless New York tale.

Image of Bemelmans Bar

2. The Penrose

The Penrose, an inviting Irish pub on the Upper East Side, brings a touch of vintage charm and a relaxed atmosphere. It’s a hub for those seeking a mix of comfort food, craft beers, and unique cocktails. The pub’s vintage-inspired decor and affable staff make it a welcoming spot for an after-work drink or a casual weekend gathering.

Image of The Penrose

3. Sugar East

Sugar East, a Manhattan hideaway, offers an escape with its speakeasy vibe and meticulously crafted cocktails. This bar exudes a sense of exclusivity and intimacy, ideal for those seeking a more secluded setting. The plush seating and vintage ambiance add to the overall experience, making it perfect for special occasions or a romantic evening out.

Image of Sugar East

4. The Jeffrey Craft Beer & Bites

The Jeffrey is a sanctuary for beer aficionados, boasting a diverse and ever-changing selection of craft beers paired with artisanal snacks. Its industrial-chic ambiance provides a casual backdrop for sipping and savoring. Knowledgeable staff are always on hand to guide guests through the unique beer selection, making every visit an educational and enjoyable experience.

Image of The Jeffrey Craft Beer & Bites

5. Caledonia Scottish Pub

Bringing a slice of Scotland to New York, Caledonia Scottish Pub is a cozy enclave known for its vast selection of Scottish whiskies and traditional pub fare. The tartan details and friendly atmosphere provide an authentic Scottish pub experience, making it a cherished spot for both whisky enthusiasts and those looking to enjoy a warm, inviting atmosphere.

Image of Caledonia Scottish Pub

6. The Dead Poet

The Dead Poet serves as a literary retreat, where cocktails and culture intersect in a cozy, intimate environment. It celebrates the literary greats, from Hemingway to Ginsberg, through its unique cocktails and book-lined walls, creating an inspiring haven for book lovers and drink aficionados alike. This bar is a testament to the timeless connection between literature and libations.

Image of The Dead Poet


In summary, the Upper East Side NY presents itself as a neighbourhood with absolute top-notch bars. Whether for the ambiance, the variety of drinks, or their unique setting, each spot comes with a story and atmosphere of its own. From classy cocktail lounges to laid-back pub vibes, these are the ultimate go-to destinations for innovative drinks and exceptional nights. Unquestionably, the nightlife in Upper East Side NY proves indicative of the city’s vibrant spirit.

Scott is the editor-in-chief of Spice Market New York. He is also an author and publisher of his own craft.