It’s been a long winter but spring has finally sprung. There’s no better place to enjoy the weather than Battery Park. With its wealth of open plazas, parks and walking promenades, it is the go-to New York spot for al fresco dining, park bench hanging and general carousing in the open air sunshine. But the ultimate ritual to mark outdoor enjoyment is Happy Hour. That feeling when the work day is over, it’s not quite nighttime and you get that hour (or two) to live it up in limbo with a cocktail in hand. Here are our favorite spots – all just a stone’s throw from Wagner Battery Park – to take in an early summer libration during the happiest of hours
Merchants River House: This casual, family friendly restaurant is located on the Hudson River Esplanade with sweeping views of the river and Statue of Liberty. It features two outdoor terraces that offer beautiful sunset Instagram photo opps and is the perfect spot for a Dark and Stormy after that 4pm meeting ran late. On the weekends, children flock to the space for a delicious kid’s menu and frothy virgin beverages.
Pier A Harbor House: What do you do with a pier that’s been shuttered for 127 years? If you’re restauranteur Peter Poulakakos you add a bar, naturally. On this once-decimated space, Poulakakos created a sprawling three level bar anchored by a soaring clock tower. In keeping with the theme, he decked it out with nautical relics, like pipes from steam engine rooms. The first floor even features a belly-up bar with raw shellfish. The top tier is the crown jewel, a rooftop event space that overlooks the harbor.
Ulysses: You can’t throw a stone without it landing on a Wall Street tycoon near Battery Park, and they all converge for Happy Hour at Ulysses, the iconic Financial District bar set right in the middle of the hustle. Not only does the bar offer a tasty selection of craft beers and pub food, but its prime location with picnic tables directly outside means all the “suits” practically spill out onto the street after market hours.
Battery Gardens: On a beautiful afternoon head to this popular park with a hidden Biergarten. Table and benches await among the wildflowers, where diners can sit down and grab a bite or enjoy a delicious local brew. If that’s not enough, the boîte overlooks New York Harbor as the large sailing and tourists boats go gliding by.