In an intensely urban landscape like New York, outdoor space is at a premium. So when there's a chance to quaff a cold beer beneath the stars or sip a glass of wine under a shady tree, jump at it. Sidewalk tables are all well and good, but that still means concrete under your feet. Secluded gardens, rooftops and watercraft are really the name of the game for the summer tippler, settings that can truly transport you into high-summer glory.
1. THE FRYING PAN
WHAT A floating dive bar? Great idea. This is a 30-year-veteran "lightship" that sank and was salvaged; it's attached to a barge and anchored on the Hudson River in Chelsea. A young crowd takes in great water and city views while downing copious quantities of beer.
WHEN | WHERE Open daily, noon to 1 a.m., Pier 66A at West 26th Street
2. HOTEL AMERICANO
WHAT This small, chic hotel from Mexico's Grupo Habita has it all -- including a roof deck with a bar and a pool. The West Chelsea locale means art world types, so dress to impress. Cocktails like a Reinvention (of the Cosmo) go down easy in this swank setting.
WHEN | WHERE Open daily, weekends noon to 11 p.m., 518 W. 27th St.
INFO 212-525-0000, hotel-americano.com
3. THE STANDARD BIERGARTEN
WHAT Right under the southernmost entrance to the High Line is this ode to Germany, part of the Standard Hotel. Smartly, everything is priced at $8, from the Bitburger beer to the currywurst. Patrons mostly hail from the Meatpacking District smart set.
WHEN | WHERE Open daily, Fridays until 1 a.m. and Saturdays until 2 a.m., 848 Washington St.
INFO 212-645-4646, standardhotels.com/new-york-city/bars/biergarten
4. BOHEMIAN HALL & BEER GARDEN
WHAT Welcome to New York's oldest beer garden, open an incredible 101 years. Picnic tables are weighed down with many Pilsner Urquells here, in honor of this Queens restaurant's Czech heritage (it was once a social club). Knockwurst and head cheese make the perfect accompaniments to the brews.
WHEN | WHERE Open daily, weekends until 3 a.m., 29-19 24th Ave., Astoria, Queens
INFO 718-274-4925, bohemianhall.com
5. SALON DE NING
WHAT The rooftop bar of the Peninsula, perhaps the city's most deluxe five-star hotel, is done up in a Shanghai Deco scheme. With your stunning vantage point on the bright lights of midtown, order a Ning Sling or some very expensive appetizers.
WHEN | WHERE Open daily, 4 p.m. to 1 a.m., 700 Fifth Ave.
INFO 212-956-2888, salondening.com