Rooftop season is upon us: That means staking out a spot at the bar early to ensure optimal sunlight and comfort. Here are our favorite watering holes to spend a sunny Saturday, or enjoy happy hour, no matter where you live or where your travels take you. At these eight spots, you’ll get to sip cocktails en plein air among great design.
The Blue Room at The Ides Rooftop, Brooklyn
80 Wythe Avenue
Above Williamsburg’s Wythe Hotel, The Blue Room at the Ides features unobstructed views of the Manhattan skyline and the East River. With craft cocktails and delectable bites, we’d feel just right sliding into the leather banquet in the corner of this Workstead-designed space.
Hours: M-F 4pm to 1:30am, Sat. & Sun. 1pm to 1:30am
Takoda, Washington DC
715 Florida Avenue NW
This sunny little biergarten, located in Washington’s Shaw District, offers 24 beers on tap, as well as a large whiskey and spirits selection. Snag a seat at the bar and snack on artisanal tater tots or mac and cheese under the wide skylight.
495 King Street
Come summer, put a getaway to Charleston on the books. Don’t miss the rooftop bar at Stars Restaurant, which offers sweeping views of charming Upper King Street and classic lowcountry fare.
Hours: M-Thurs. 5pm to 10pm, Fri. 5pm to 10:30pm, Sat. 10am to 2pm and 5pm to 10:30pm, Sun. 10am to 2pm and 5pm to 10pm
L.A. Jackson, Nashville
401 11th Avenue South
High atop the Thompson hotel sits L.A. Jackson, the newest eatery by New Orleans-based chef John Besh (of Shaya, Willa Jean, and Domenica fame.) The chic rooftop bar, designed by Parts and Labor, offers bites and brews from across the South.
Monkey Board, New Orleans
1111 Gravier Street
In the Central Business District, check out Monkey Board on the roof of The Troubadour, one of the latest hotels to pop up in downtown New Orleans. Bar snacks include a pretzel with beer cheese fondue, a pickle-topped fried chicken sandwich, and yes, rainbow sprinkle birthday cake.
Hours: M-F 5pm to 12am, Sat. & Sun. 11am to 12am
1608 Elm Street
On the top floor of Dallas’s stylish local department store, Forty Five Ten, you’ll find Mirador. The bright, contemporary space features plenty of outdoor seating and is quickly becoming the downtown destination.
Hours: Mon.-Wed. 11am to 2:30pm, Thurs. 11am to 2:30pm and 6pm to 11pm, Fri. & Sat. 11am to 2:30pm and 6pm to 11pm, closed Sunday
Boiler Nine Bar + Grill, Austin
800 West Cesar Chavez Street
At the Observatory Bar atop Boiler Nine Bar + Grill, tuck into a variety of bar snacks, like curry shrimp skewers or twice-cooked ribs. On the side, go for a bespoke cocktail: that is, pick a fresh or fruity concoction then choose one of their recommended spirits.
Hours: Tues.- Thurs. 5pm to 11pm, Fri. & Sat. 5pm to 12am
12 Michigan Avenue
At Cindy’s above the Chicago Athletic Association Hotel, sip on “potions” and “elixirs” from their extensive cocktail list, or try large-format boozy beverages to serve 20 of your closest friends. Pro tip: arrive for an afternoon or early-evening libation, as tourists flock here for the sweeping view come sunset.
Hours: M-F 11am to 1am, Sat. 10am to 2am, Sun. 10am to 12am
Filifera, Los Angeles
1550 North El Centro Avenue
On the roof of the Hollywood Proper Hotel and Residences, find L.A.’s latest open-air hotspot, Filifera. There, take in views of the city from every angle, including an epic view of the Hollywood Sign. And by the way, the communal spaces within Hollywood Proper are designed by Kelly Wearstler, so they’re sure to stun.
Hours: Closed Mon. & Tues, Wed. & Thurs. 5pm to 11pm, Fri. 5pm to 12am, Sat. 10am to 12am, Sun. 10am to 8pm
Published April 29, 2017