Riding isn’t enough. So much of the fun of being a motorcycle rider in the Northeast is where you have breakfast, pop in for a cold brew, or rest your weary bones at the end of a long day. We’re going to explore the most comforting, tasty, decadent hangouts, which also happen to be biker-friendly. From dirty bird Manhattan bars to idyllic Connecticut taverns, we’re going to give you a little bit of everything. These Northeast hot spots are going to get your engine humming.
We’re starting our tour with the least fancy, most delicious biker spot imaginable. This roadside BBQ offers slow cooked premium meat from a wood firer. There are no white tablecloths at this joint. In fact, the entire restaurant is on wheels. Open season is from May till November, starting at 11am, and offering the finest BBQ meat imaginable until they’re totally sold out (which can happen early.) Find them on the corner of 17b & Royce Road in White Lake, New York. Pulled pork and a loaded BBQ potato? Yes.
Situated in beautiful Minerva, NY, Sporty’s is all about good times and good friends. This is one of the finest real biker bars in the northeast, but it’s also a family bar and welcomes everyone from all walks of life. Sporty’s describes itself as a “Biker Bar and Community Center.” This is the perfect destination for those on a ride in the Schroon Lake and Lake George region. Have a beer, play some horseshoes, tetherball, basketball, or even take a hike at Minerva Lake across the street. Be sure to try the hot wings.
If you’re in New York, it’s time to brave the streets of Manhattan, where you’ll find some of the best biker dive bars in the country. Whiskey Ward is located on 121 Essex St.(between Delancey & Rivington Sts.) Enjoy a relaxed atmosphere complete with pool tables and an endless supply of peanuts. Be sure to play some Led Zeppelin on the juke box, and choose from a selection of fine whiskey.
Found on Route 33 in Freehold, New Jersey, the Cabin is the ultimate biker and family hangout, offering live entertainment every Friday and Saturday. There’s a selection of over 24 draft beers, and menu items are made to order. The Cabin also offers a comprehensive selection with everything from pizza to fajitas, and pasta to wings. Bikers love the rustic cabin atmosphere that gives the joint its name. You can find it at 984 Route 33.
For riders that are looking for a little sophistication, the Horse & Hound is where you’ll enjoy a comfortable, elegant dining atmosphere that is still biker friendly. This is a total throwback to the 1700s, and the original Horse & Hound Inn pre-dates the American Revolutionary War. It was once a mason schoolhouse, a gin and rum mill, and a state coach stop on the Old Post Road from New York City to Danbury. Located at 94 Spring Street South, Salem, NY, the trip is worth it for the Maryland crab cakes.
Image source: Google Maps
Speaking of Old World charm, the Cobble Stone in Purchase, NY, is the perfect blend of biker joint and family comfort dining. It’s long been considered the locals’ tavern of choice, and it’s nestled in a wonderful bit of forest, featuring plenty of twisty roads that bikers love. Enjoy the stained-glass windows, beautiful plants, parquet floors, barnsiding, and custom, inlaid designs. Or screw all of that and just enjoy the burger. The homey tavern is located at 620 Anderson Hill Rd.
Okay, let’s look at something a little less classy. American Trash is the quintessential Manhattan biker bar located at 1471 1st Ave, between 76th and 77th. There is no other Lower East Side dive bar quite like this. They have cheap beer, a pool table, and live music. The walls are decked out with mufflers, so basically it’s like a Harley exploded all over the place. Be sure to partake of the arm wrestling.
If Manhattan isn’t your thing, there’s always Staten Island. Big Nose Kate’s Saloon is located at 2484 Arthur Kill Rd. This is the best dive bar on Staten Island, and it’s seriously biker friendly. Cheap beer and good food? Why not. There are no games at this bar, but rather an atmosphere that invites talking, eating, and drinking. We’re just going to make this easy for you: they have loaded potato skins.
Image source: The New York Times
Looking for the quintessential biker breakfast? There ain’t nothing like Blind Charlie’s, located at 74 Westchester Ave, Pound Ridge, NY. The pancakes are to die for, the omelettes are the size of your arm, and the Sunday biker crowd is friendly and not intimidating. (Warning: if you come here, you might encounter the author of this quiz having breakfast before an idyllic weekend ride in Connecticut.)
Image source: Time Out
We gotta give Brooklyn some love, right? Duff’s is the best biker eatery in Brooklyn, located at 28 N. 3rd St. Enjoy the baby skulls, taxidermy, crazy posters, the bust of Elvis, disembodied doll heads, pin-up shots, and so much more. If all that decor is too much for you, just go out on the patio and stand in front of the grill, patiently waiting for your ribs. Have a cheap drink while you’re at it.
Image source: Yelp
Enough with the cheap bars already. Rhodes North Tavern is located in the heart of Sloatsburg, NY, and locals love it for the diverse menu with burgers, sandwiches, pizza, pasta, seafood, chicken, steaks, and chops. They’ve got their own butcher shop where they cut the meat, so you know that stuff is fresh. Order a draft beer or specialty cocktail, and finish it all off with a premium Italian coffee. You can even dine outside with your biker buds in the summer months, or lounge on the Adirondack chairs overlooking a babbling brook. Located at 40 Orange Turnpike (Route 17) in Sloatsburg, NY, bikers are always welcome at this classy place.
We’re jumping up to Massachusetts now; Fall River, MA to be exact. Located at 1 Ferry Street, The Tipsy Seagull is everything that the name suggests. Considered one of the best bars outside of Boston, The Tipsy Seagull is situated on the mouth of the Narragansett Bay. Experience a taste of Key West and do shots with your fellow riders. (At the end of the day.) Be sure to try the CooCoo Juice From F Dock, a wonderful concoction of Captain Morgan, Peachtree, banana liqueur, grenadine, orange juice, pineapple, and Myer’s. When you’re ready to soak up that alcohol, head to the adjacent Tipsy Toboggan for Mike’s Mac and Cheese.
As you can see, when it comes to the Northeast, the biker hangout spots are diverse and delightful. Whether you’re stopping at a rustic tavern or a rollicking dive bar, you’re going to find that there’s something for everyone when you take to the road. Bed & Breakfasts, Motor lodges, and quaint Inns; there’s always somewhere to rest your head, fill your belly, and damage your liver. Ride like the wind.