Party Earth Review In the heart of Williamsburg’s ongoing transformation (de-evolution?) from grungy to chic, The Charleston remains proudly on the grungy side. Old chandeliers cast a dim glow over this rough-around-the-edges dive, creating... ... read full review
174 Bedford Avenue
New York, NY 11211
L: Bedford Avenue / North 7 Street
WILLIAMSBURG, NEW YORK –
In the heart of Williamsburg’s ongoing transformation (de-evolution?) from grungy to chic, The Charleston remains proudly on the grungy side.
Old chandeliers cast a dim glow over this rough-around-the-edges dive, creating soft shadows that hide the nicks in the ratty tables and checkered floor that have probably been there since the place opened in 1933.
A mirror-backed bar dominates the front area, with a few booths to one side and a propped-up flat-screen perpetually tuned to Netflix selections.
Like the décor, the prices are also a throwback, attracting tatted wild ones, metalheads, adventurous hipsters, and reformed yuppies, who slouch in to siphon $5 beer and shot combos and reminisce over the hardcore punk blasting on the stereo.
Further back, next to a set of classroom desks slathered in graffiti, the kitchen dishes out cheese pizzas, which are free during the impressive noon-to-8pm Happy Hour and cost only a measly buck after that.
More tables and open floor space unfold further back, where local bands used to thrash out music on random nights, though now they are more likely to set up in the unkempt bomb shelter of a basement.
Routinely packed on Fridays and Saturdays, the place draws a good crowd for Tuesday Trivia as well, while the rest of the week promises a mellow spot – save for the pulsing juke – to get hosed.
No one dresses up for The Charleston, but anyone who likes rowdy vibes and cheap drinks will want to dance over right now.
Grungy crust punks, metalheads, carelessly stylish Williamsburg hipsters, and yuppies remembering their glory days, mid-20s to early 30s.
Flat-screen tuned to assortment of Netflix selections.
Local bands play on random nights from 8pm. Call venue for schedule.
Jukebox stocked with punk and rock and more punk.
Free personal cheese pizza (toppings extra) available noon to 8pm. Happy Hour daily noon–8pm.
Pizza $1, free before 8pm with $5+ drink purchase, extra toppings $1/each. Beer $3–$6, cocktails and wells $5–$13, beer and shot combos $5.
Casual to grungy: t-shirts, jeans, plaid, torn band tees, patched-up pants, ripped fishnets, midriff-bearing tops.
Tuesdays for the popular trivia night, Friday and Saturday nights for a packed and raucous house, or random nights to check out an eclectic local band.
Just down the block is Spike Hill (184-186 Bedford Avenue), a longtime favorite music venue featuring nightly concerts and a divey lounge that opens early and offers a full bar and a full menu of greasy grub.