There's nothing I hate more than shelling out $6 dollars for a Bud Light in a bar on the West Village. Unfortunately, in NY, high drink prices are hard to avoid- especially when you've got a questionable ID. Now that I'm 21, it's a lot easier to get into those places that have great prices- whether during a happy hour special or all day long. Here's a couple of my favorite places:
The name is pretty explanatory- $1 burgers, $2 shots, $3 beers. But don't go expecting a double decker and a jigger of Jack Daniels- these burgers are definitely more of the White Castle variety. Still, they're great drunk munchie food, and at $1 apiece, they won't cut into your budget.
With names ranging from "Jolly Rancher" to "Screaming Orgasm," the shots are more sugar than alcohol- but hey, what did you expect for two dollars? And you're always safe with the beer, which goes above and beyond the typical happy hour priced Natty Ice- Newcastle, Sam Adams, even Stella goes for just $3 a pop.
With six locations in the NYC area, Mexican restaurant blockheads is a drinker's delight, with frozen margaritas starting at three dollars (add a variety of fruity flavors for just a dollar more). Unlike the ones at Burger Shot, these margaritas pack a punch, so make sure to complement your drink with some of their cheap, but delicious, Mexican fare. (Try the guacamole.)
Also, be sure to try their speciality, the Mexican Bulldog: a frozen margarita topped with a full sized Corona and an extra shot of tequila, all for just $7. (Just don't have more than one.)
Immediately recognizable by the famed oversized pig statue at the entrance, Rudy's Bar and Grill in Hell's Kitchen is a great place to pound brewskies. Bottled beer ranges from $2.50 for a Stegmier to $5, but if you're going with a big group, it's probably better to invest in pitchers. Seven bucks will get you a pitcher of "Rudy's Blonde," the house special, which goes down easy. If you're getting hungry after a few pitchers, you can always go up to the bar and get a hot dog or two- they're free, anytime of the week.
Side Note: This bar has a zero tolerance policy on fake IDs, which they confiscate and proudly display in a collage above the bar- which, for many college students, is a lost $50+ investment. Since they card at the door on weekends, it's probably not a good idea to risk it.
4. Horus Cafe
Like hookah but hate spending $25 with a two drink minimum? Come to Horus Cafe on Avenue B and 10th. Prices start at just $15 for a hookah with a one drink minimum, with prices ranging from $4 for a shirley temple to $8 for a bellini. The place is always packed on a weekend, yet the staff is very attentive. Definitely worth checking out.
They have belly dancers in every Friday and Saturday night, and karaoke on Sundays- although it's gotta be hard to sing with all that smoke circling.
A staple in the East Village, The Pour House has never been high on my list- until I took a look at their weeklong specials. Every night has a different deal- from Monday's 25 cent wings and $1.95 natty ice's (served in a brown bag) to Fridays, where ladies drink half price cocktails from 10 pm to close. And it's not just the drinks: Tuesdays are Rock Band and Wii night, and Saturdays boast an 80's dance party.