There is really something for every kind of social situation in Jersey City. There are breweries, gin distilleries, and plenty of clever non-alcoholic beverages, meaning we are never short on choices for something to sip. Going to a speakeasy-style bar in Jersey City is the ultimate way to enjoy a delicious cocktail treat, where the ingredients are fresh and the recipes inventive. To help you do just that, we’ve rounded up all of the great Jersey City cocktail bars with swanky speakeasy vibes — right in our backyard. All have a few things in common — they’re not easy to find from the outside, they’re dark and den-like on the inside, and they serve fun cocktails. Read on for a list of speakeasy-style bars in Jersey City and Hoboken.
The Junto: Attic Bar | 68 Mercer Street, Jersey City
This speakeasy is only open 7 days a week from 6PM to whenever the team decides to close. The small, intimate space serves up out-of-this-era cocktails that are sure to impress, and a stained glass window glows from behind the bar. The creative menu combined with the intimate, rich ambiance makes for a hidden gem in the Grove Street neighborhood of Jersey City.
143 Social | 143 Newark Avenue, Jersey City
Located inside Bareburger, 143 Social feels like an escape from the urban jungle that sits above. The entrance is lined with wines from France, and the vibe is incredibly chic, embodying living room of a stylish home. While the captivating wallpaper, plush seating, and dimly-lit ambiance fill the room, this speakeasy is brought to life with the buzzing crowd, an electric fireplace in the center of the room, and a decorative bar lined with a selection of the finest spirits. One can expect to find a selection of spirits, imported wines, and beer. There’s also a limited selection of small bites along with intricate dishes that complement the secretive ambiance, including Stracciatella made with chive oil and roasted mini San Marzano tomatoes, Wagyu beef sliders, and more.
Nucky’s | 8 Erie Street, Jersey City
View this post on Instagram
Inside Hudson Hound, the industrial Irish-style pub off of Newark Avenue, there’s a moonshine speakeasy in the depths below. Nucky’s Moonshine Speakeasy opened shortly after Hudson Hound’s debut — opening below it in May 2021. Named for the fictional bootlegger at the center of HBO’s Boardwalk Empire who was inspired by an actual Atlantic City crime boss, Nucky’s embodies the spirit of the roaring twenties. The speakeasy’s decor embraces a Prohibition-era aesthetic from the time you walk through the (secret) door.
PS Wine Bar | 193 Newark Avenue, Jersey City
The owners of Pet Shop JC are Jersey City locals who collectively wanted to create a low-key space for artists, musicians, and other locals to hang out while the other new downtown Jersey City establishments are “focused on attracting the metropolitan crowd.” Located underneath Pet Shop is a speakeasy-style wine bar, called PS Wine Bar, which houses wines produced by small independent farmers and some beers and spirits. It’s actually a decently-sized two-room space, but depending on the night can get crowded. The vibe is cozy, intimate, and inviting. Tip: Order the tater tots!
See More: A Guide to Speakeasies in North Jersey
Sushi by Bou | 218 Newark Avenue, Jersey City + 333 River Street, Hoboken
Located inside Ani Ramen, Sushi by Bou is a sushi speakeasy that allows visitors to enjoy a high-end Omakase experience, when diners put themselves in the hands of the chef, giving him or her the power to choose the ingredients + presentations of the meal. Beyond the sushi, however, this spot also boasts a small cocktail bar serving a selection of handmade cocktails, imported sake, and rare Japanese Whiskeys.
Recently, Sushi by Bou opened another location within Hoboken’s own W Hotel, with a similar vibe and fun twist on omakase x cocktails.
The Sinatra Room | 36 Newark Avenue, Hoboken
Inside of Panela, on its lower level, there is a speakeasy-style space called The Sinatra Room that is mostly events-only, but worth a peek — should it be open for the night and available for reservations. The Sinatra Room doesn’t serve food, but Panela is above and is a newer Latin American restaurant.
Under the Boot | 116 Newark Avenue, Jersey City
Photo Credit: Zack Perl
Under the Boot describes itself as a “Southern twist on a historic concept…awoken by effervescent highballs and spirited conversation.” The permanent addition to the semi-new Jersey City Southern-style eatery Boots + Bones kicked opened up back in May of 2023. The spot operates Thursdays through Sundays, with hours varying between a 2AM or 3AM closure, depending on the day. The menu boasts a curated selection of craft beers, wines, and cocktails. There’s also a variety of small bites, which take an upscale approach to the upstairs menu at Boots + Bones. Think: avocado deviled eggs, oysters, fried shrimp skewers, and more.
The Archer | 176 Newark Avenue
View this post on Instagram
The entry hallway at the Archer has an almost hidden feel, though not a true speakeasy. Visitors entering the space can appreciate the vibe right away: a dimly lit hunting lodge takes on a speakeasy. There are wood accents all around, taxidermy-style mounted animal heads, a fireplace, and antler chandeliers hanging above — the hunting theme pairs extremely well with its game-based menu. The cocktail menu is a combination of traditional libations and seasonal creations, so trust that it is ever-changing.
DullBoy | 364 Grove Street
View this post on Instagram
Located just a few blocks from the Grove Street PATH, this spot isn’t a secret per se, but it may make you question if you’re at the right place. Once inside you’ll be greeted by a floor-to-ceiling velvet curtain, move that aside, and behind it you will find a dimly lit modern-day cocktail bar that feels like you just stepped inside a Manhattan cocktail bar. The décor lends itself to a literary theme with typewriters, books, and torn-out pages of famous works covering walls. Dullboy has a “seat yourself” policy, and while seats at the bar are cool, to appreciate the ambiance, try and grab a spot at one of the mirrored tables adorned with a single votive. There guests can opt to sit on a crushed velvet bench or tufted ottoman — there are details to appreciate everywhere. Dullboy specializes in handcrafted cocktails, and the menu is full of classic items and fresh creations, each one selected to show off seasonal flavors like fresh fruit and herbs.
Backstage Bar | 1039 Washington Street
The space behind Sirenetta was created to be a neighborhood stop for romantic drinks, a nightcap with friends, or a unique place to celebrate a special occasion with an intimate feel. While it’s not a full hidden entrance speakeasy, it has a side entrance as well as being accessible from behind Sirenetta’s restaurant space. The space sometimes has cocktail classes and on Tuesdays, an all night happy hour.
Coming Soon: Don’t Tell Liv
This speakeasy was announced as joining the Jersey City scene in December 2022, but has yet to open. More details here.