Apr-Oct: Sun-Thu, 11am-10pm; Fri-Sat, 11am-1am; Nov-Mar: Daily, closed
D, F, N, Q at Coney Island-Stillwell Ave.
Said to have housed an under-the-boardwalk cabaret before it became the Hebrew National Deli in 1934, this cavernous space overlooking the Atlantic was purchased in 1975 by the late, beloved Rubin Jacobs. Jacobs, who once sold knishes on the beach as a kid, eventually went on to own the neighborhoods last four bathhouses. His photographs of old Coney Island, and of the bar’s motley assortment of habitués, still coat the wall behind the gruff porters—some of whom have spent half a century filling plastic cups through skinhead brawls and pirate-and-mermaid weddings. While tourists and hipsters visiting Coney Island for the day prefer to eat their short-order grub at plastic seats overlooking the boardwalk, the octogenarian regulars opt to sing along to Sinatra and Perry Como at the 45-foot-long bar. Like them, Ruby’s doesn’t have long in this world as a glitzy redevelopment plan may air out the bathrooms once and for all.
Picnics with a view, roller-skating nostalgia, and a party for gay headbangers.