10 Best Dive Bars in New York, 2013 Edition
Tip-Top Bar and Grill
It's always Christmas at Bed-Stuy's Tip-Top, where twinkling lights and tinsel line the ceilings, even though the windows are reinforced with iron bars. For 30 years, it operated as an after-hours spot without a license. But a go-ahead from the State Liquor Authority hasn't watered down the mixed drinks, made with just a few splashes of soda. Tip-Top is in the basement of a townhouse, and only a buzzer will get you through the locked doors. 432 Franklin Ave., Brooklyn
MTA workers and Port Authority stragglers stop by the Hell's Kitchen bar. Regulars have been coming to Holland Bar since 1944, though some were scared it wouldn't reopen after a six-month closure in 2008 when the landlord raised the rent. The doors open at 8 a.m. and soon after, folks fill up the stools under a giant neon sign that spells out "Holland" in script. Though the ashes of a past bartender no longer rest in peace behind the bar -- a casualty of the 2008 shutter -- pints are still $2.50, and the bathroom door is more often than not held together by duct tape. 532 Ninth Ave.
Tourists are rare at this boxing shrine, even though it's smack in the middle of Times Square. Fight posters, news clippings, and giant photos of Muhammad Ali line the walls. If you're lucky, Jimmy Glenn himself might make you a signature Hurricane with spiced rum, cranberry juice, grenadine, and amaretto while slinging stories about his days as a boxing coach. Some say Jimmy's is the only reason to go to Times Square, perhaps because it's a tiny oasis in the center of New York's craziest commotion. 140 W. 44th St.
Don't see you favorite dive bar on this list? Tell us what we missed in the comments, or tweet with the hashtag #VVdivebars. Then keep an eye out for a readers'-favorites edition next time around.
94 Bedford Ave., Brooklyn, NY