You don’t need to spend nearly $4 on a single grilled oyster, $20 on dry, crumbly boudin, or go out of your way to have dinner at Canary Club, a multi-floor Cajun spot on the LES. But you should make a reservation for the live music lounge downstairs, which has performances Tuesday through Saturday from 9pm until 4am. The red fabric booths, large format cocktails, and live jazz make it feel like a speakeasy in New Orleans, and it’s a great place to hang out with a first date or significant other.
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32 great options when you want to listen to live music without buying a ticket.
More spots in Lower East SideSee more
CloudM Rooftop Bar
CloudM is the rooftop at the CitizenM Hotel on the LES. It isn’t the coolest rooftop in the world, but it has a great view, and it stays pretty quiet.
Public Kitchen is the restaurant on the ground floor of Public Hotel. It has Jean George’s name on it, but it’s not very good.
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Runner Up is an outdoor only pop-up restaurant in Park Slope run by the popular bakery Winner.
District Social is perfect for when you’re in Midtown and you need a not-terrible place to drink with a group.
Aretsky’s Patroon is a three-floor spot in Midtown that works for business meals when you’re not paying.
Suggested by our writers
Little Branch is an underground speakeasy in the West Village with occasional live music and good date-night vibes.
Bar Belly is a cocktail and oyster bar on the Lower East Side that’s an ideal first date spot.
If you absolutely want to go drink at a speakeasy, Attaboy (on the Lower East Side) is one of the best options.
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