THE TOP 5: Bars with Free Snacks

If Economics class taught me anything, it was that there’s no such thing as a free lunch, but it turns out there is such thing as a free dinner — even in Manhattan. Here are the top 5 of many schmorgasboards that the city has to offer to starving artists, students, even bankers alike.

1. Blind Tiger Ale House (281 Bleecker Street at Jones Street): This trendy microbrewery offers a selection of 31 unique draft beers, far from the likes of Bud Light or Coors. If you come before 8 PM you get $1 off your draft beer of choice. If you come Wednesday at 6 PM you get to sample some of the 4 pounds of cheese from Murray’s that are placed out for the taking along with fresh baguettes from Amy’s Bread. While the space can get cramped and sitting room is limited, this atmosphere is a bit more laid back than those sports bars tend to get.

Website: http://www.blindtigeralehouse.com/

2. Burp Castle (41 East 7th Street): This tiny hidden gem takes drinking seriously – and has an abbey theme to boot. Gregorian chants play on the stereo and cards encourage drinkers to speak in a whisper, but the choice of unique Belgian, German, and British beers make it all worth it. Not to mention, if you go Sunday, Monday, and Wednesday between 5 and 8 PM you can enjoy a side of pommes frites, gratis of charge.

Website: http://burpcastlenyc.wordpress.com/

3. Crocodile Lounge (325 East 14th Street): Happy hour offers $4 well drinks and $3 Yuengling pints. After 7 PM, $6 buys you a pint of beer (and 7 buys a mixed drink) and a ticket towards your own personal pizza cooked on the brick oven in the back of the bar. For an added bonus, join the young college crowd on Wednesday night around 8:30 PM and participate in 4 rounds of challenging trivia. The winning 3 teams win money towards their bar tab.

Website: http://www.myspace.com/crocodilenyc

4. Obivia (201 Lafayette Street): This cozy but classy lounge has a happy hour that goes until 8 PM and boasts mixed drinks and sangria glasses for $4, plus free all you can eat popcorn. No one knows exactly what the magical spices are in this snack that make it so irresistible, but this treat will have you asking the bartender for refill after refill. If you have a couple extra bucks, you can also spring for $3 mini burgers or $5 steamed dumplings.

Website: http://obivia.com/

5. Rodeo Bar (375 3rd Avenue): Although the atmosphere can get a bit wild, this bar is always a good time. Happy hour goes until 9 PM every night and has pretty good lime or strawberry margaritas for $6 a pop and $4 draft beers. If you get there before 8 PM during the week you can partake in the feast of buffalo wings and nachos, free of charge.

Website: http://www.rodeobar.com/

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About Kate Hollinger

Kate is an avid lover of all things food, drink, and music who is trying to soak up every aspect of life in the big apple after spending over twenty years in a small town. Follow her on some of her foodie and concert going adventures at www.cilantroandspice.com.
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