Old-school New York City charm

While many other bars are trying to create it, old-school New York charm comes naturally to this institution, which has been slinging drinks since 1882 (then known as Viemeister’s). The charm, however, is not the only anachronism that makes it so popular: Old Town also boasts a mahogany bar, distressed mirrors, a dumbwaiter, and high, tin ceilings.


old town bar entrance. photos @lucascompan


When it first opened, Viemeisters was a place that only served drinks, but during Prohibition, the bar was forced to change its name to Craig's Restaurant and start serving food in order to operate as a speak easy.


After the end of Prohibition and the closing of the nearby 18th Street Subway station in 1948, the bar began to fall into disrepair. It wasn't until the late 1960s, when local bar manager Larry Meagher took over operations, that the bar saw a resurgence of popularity


So expect no glitz or fanfare at this old-timey Flatiron saloon, a “sanctuary for the pre-entitlement crowd” looking to have a cold one courtesy of “real bartenders – not mixologists.”


What locals and travelers say about Old Town: click here.


Now take a tour throughout the oldest bars in New York City. Cheers!

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