Mon-Sat, 11am-4am; Sun, noon-3am
4pm-9pm; $3 Bud, Bud Lite, and Rolling Rock; half price well drinks,
1 at Christopher St.-Sheridan Sq.; A, B, C, D, E, F, M at W. 4th St.-Washington Sq.
It’s been almost forty years since the Stonewall Riots, but the now-grizzled crowd at Julius around the corner has hardly budged. This weathered West Village tavern is not only New York’s oldest gay bars, but also one of its very oldest barrooms – it’s been in continuous operation since 1864. It’s ridden out Prohibition as a speakeasy, lured Broadway starlets downtown for its famous burgers, and played host to the Sip-In of 1966, when a group of gay men demanded bar service at a time when homosexuals could not legally assemble. Julius is a bit worse for the wear, however, and it doesn’t immediately seem like a gay scene; only a few back-room rainbow scarves set it apart from any other male-heavy, ramshackle sports bar. But the yellowing newspaper clippings and wall of signed head shots recall the bar’s storied past—as does the graying crowd, putting back bottles and five-dollar burgers from the grill in the corner. As trendier gay bars wash over the West Village, Julius soldiers on, unchanged.
Picnics with a view, roller-skating nostalgia, and a party for gay headbangers.