In the middle of a sleepy residential block just beyond McCarren Park, you’ll find this long-time neighborhood favorite bar with a focus on low-fuss entertainment. In a sea of swanky new Williamsburg bars, Pete’s stands out for its subtlety and rough-around-the-edges retro charm, from the original candy store facade to the 50s barstools and vintage wallpaper. The vibe here is friendly and casually hip, with a healthy dose of flannel shirts and black-rimmed glasses. Once you have procured a delicious cocktail like the Key Lime Zinger ($10), head to the delightfully intimate performance space which combines the look of a cabaret with the narrow dimensions of a trolley car. A steady stream of acts and events run throughout the evening. Nightly music sets range from acoustic folk to danceable indie-rock. You can also cheer on or take part in open mics, poetry readings, and a monthly spelling bee. Trivia jockeys compete for glory and the prize of a $75 bar tab in the popular Wednesday night “Quiz Off. ” Most of the events are free or under $10, making it easy to pop in for an unexpected bit of fun.
709 Lorimer St., Williamsburg, Brooklyn; 718-302-3770; L subway to Lorimer St. or Bedford Ave.; Website: http://www.petescandystore.com.
Photo by Kent Westlund, used under Flickr Creative Commons license