Memorial Day has the distinction of being the unofficial kick-off to summer, but the Fourth of July is the season’s central, paramount party. And considering Macy’s fireworks display (finally back over the East River) is the envy of the larger U.S., you don’t need to sweat it if you haven’t scored an invite to some beachfront clambake outside of the city. So here’s where to celebrate Independence Day NYC-style, including rooftop soirees at Westlight, The Crown and more.
Cecconi’s: Though the Soho House restaurant boasts locations in London, West Hollywood, Miami and Berlin, only the newly minted (and a looker to boot!) Brooklyn branch of will do on the Fourth of July, thanks to its prime location on Water Street in DUMBO — in full view of the Brooklyn Bridge, the skyline, and of course, the fireworks display over the East River (making a menu of bellinis, spritzes, Venetian cicchetti and Maine Lobster Spaghetti mere extras).
55 Water St, (718) 650-3900
Fornino: Serving as a more casual (i.e., less costly) counterpoint to Cecconi’s, the Brooklyn Bridge outpost of Michael Ayoub’s inventive pizzeria, Fornino, affords the same magnificent views. Not to mention an appealing assortment of radicchio and pear salads, roasted beef brisket sandwiches, and mixed wild mushroom, wild arugula, or soppresata picante-topped pies.
Pier 6, Brooklyn Bridge Park, (718) 422-1107
The Crown: Literally the crown jewel of Dale Talde and Co.’s new collection of establishments in Chinatown’s Hotel 50 Bowery, this rooftop bar hangs a whopping 21 floors above the city, providing sweeping views all the way into Brooklyn. So stake out a spot at one of two al fresco patios, while you celebrate summer’s hallmark holiday with Thai Basil Watermelon Margaritas and bowls of Shrimp and Calamari Ceviche, tossed with tomato, lime and herbs and served with cassava chips.
50 Bowery, (646) 630-8057
The Heights: Over in Nomad, Talde and team further assert their July 4th dominance at their other new rooftop perch, The Heights, which occupies the 31st floor of the Arlo hotel. Tickets are available for either afternoon or evening soirees, and include unlimited BBQ eats, along with wine, beer and frosè.
11 East 31st St., (212) 951-1141
Westlight: When it comes to Brooklyn-based rooftop bars, it’s going to be hard for anyone to top the William Vale’s Westlight. Literally; it looms a whopping 23-stories over the East River (making it ground zero for firework peeping), and the food and drink programs are overseen by Andrew Carmellini’s NoHo Hospitality Group, owing to well above average drunk fare like Fried Filthy Green Olives, Duck Carnitas Tacos and Kurobuta Baby Back Ribs.
111 North 12th St., (718) 307-7100
La Marina: There’s no denying that The Marina is a scene, but there’s no other bar/restaurant in New York with 75,000-square feet of beachfront space (or any beachfront space for that matter). So if you’re destined to spend the 4th in the city, but dying to dig your toes in the sand, spring for a VIP ticket (you’ll score your own cabana, plus buckets of champagne, chivas regal and tequila), and get ready for an extended evening of live music, barbecue, booze, and of course, fireworks, lasting from 3pm until, well, whenever the party ends.
348 Dyckman St., (212) 567-6300