Gowanus Yacht Club
323 Smith St.
GYC lays the down-market BK ironica on thick: the name; cheap cans of PBR; food served on paper plates. But none of the neighborhood’s hipster-drinkers mind, and it’s no wonder. The low-key, beach-frontish vibe, the entirely open-air environs (on a corner where it’s easy to inadvertently enter the bar thinking you were descending into the subway), and the festive throng make this an ideal place to while away a sunny summer afternoon or warm evening slugging back beers without breaking the bank. Because it lacks any indoor space, GYC is open only from late-spring to early-autumn – which means locals make sure to cram in as much quality time here as they can during the limited schedule. The roster of bars in this hood is surprisingly segmented – one type hangs out exclusively here, another exclusively there – but everyone comes together at Gowanus Yacht Club, where the sand-in-your-flip-flops, sit-on-your-beach-towel-so-you-don’t-get-the-chair-wet aesthetic is utterly irresistible.