Psst, we found another one. Another secret spot.
But sssh, we’re going to tell you where it is. It’s not behind a deli this time. In fact, we’ll say that it’s um, well it’s outside.
There are hidden wine cellars under the Brooklyn bridge!
But they’re empty. At least they’re empty right now. The cellars were officially emptied at the end of WWII, but the history of the cellars goes back further.
The ‘hidden’ cellars are nested under the entrances to the bridge on both sides. Despite our initial surprise as to why cellars are under the bridge, it turns out that was the original plan in said bridge’s construction design.
According to TimeOut NY, Washington Roebling, the chief bridge engineer, had two liquor establishments who were on both sides of the projected roadway space and had no intention of moving their business.
Well, we can't blame them for their location choices. Who'd pass those up in NYC?
Unable to convince or force either of them to budge, he built both of the companies’ cellars within the bridge entrances: Rackey’s Wine Company on the Brooklyn shore and Luyties & Co on the Manhattan side. And to pay off the project, other areas within the bridge were rented out.
A space underneath the prying eyes of New York’s Prohibition Act? It was practically a beacon for selling bootlegged liquor.
Speaking of, did you know that the term 'bootleg' came from the way liquor was transported across the city on people by attaching the booze to– Right. This isn't a history lesson (kinda). Back to the cellar.
The space was a hotspot for pop-up speakeasies for the upper crust members of NYC society during prohibition, which you should know, is our all-time fave #aesthetic.
We’re going to keep our ears peeled for any current bars that may be there today. You know, keeping the spirits alive with some more spirits in us.