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Ask the Critic: What Are New York's Cozy Winter Hideaways?

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[Illustration: Robyn Lee]

Editor's note: Here to answer your questions is senior managing editor, former SENY editor, and frequent author of our NYC restaurant reviews Carey Jones. We'll take a few of your questions each week and give you the New York restaurant advice you're looking for. Email carey@seriouseats.com with the subject line Ask the Critic to submit your question!

The Best Cozy Winter Spots

Hi Critic, I'm probably one of the only people in New York who loves the weather we're having this year. Winter is my favorite season. Colder and snowier the better. I really love going to places you might describe as "cozy," bars and restaurants that are warm and welcoming in the cold. Where would you recommend to best appreciate this time of year? Bonus points for good food, fireplaces, and whiskey.

I've spent a good deal of time in the UK and in Ireland, and I have to say: they have the cozy (cosy?) pub thing down. In fact, I never much minded a dreary day over there because every one was a great excuse to hunker down with a pint. (Sunny April afternoon and it's a little hard to justify a 1 p.m. beer. But a steak pie and Newcastle when it's raining sideways? Don't mind if I do.)

In New York, I get that safe-from-the-elements feeling at Molly's Shabeen on Third Avenue, where pints are pulled properly, the bartenders have accents, and the burgers qualify as genuine winter comfort food. Out in Queens, Donovan's is a good bet for all the same reasons. Both have fireplaces (and as we recently found, both serve more than respectable fish and chips). On the fancier end, The Breslin is sure to warm you through, with its conviviality, its cocktails, and its unabashedly meat-heavy menu.

On the less-pubby end? Red Hook's The Good Fork is a particularly cozy spot, snug and warmly lit, with Korean-style steak and eggs you won't want to miss. In Park Slope, there's Applewood, a quiet neighborhood mainstay since 2004; it's charmingly homey, with big windows in front to watch the snow fall. And back in Manhattan, Nolita's Peasant couldn't be better suited to winter, with a brick oven emanating warmth and the hearty Italian dishes that emerge from it.

What are your favorite winter spots?

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About the author: Carey Jones is the former managing editor of Serious Eats. Follow her on Twitter (@careyjones).

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