Staying Informed

The Rise of Dine-In Theaters in NYC

With the long-awaited Alamo Drafthouse finally opening in NYC this past October, New York has seen the rise in a number of hybrid movie theater restaurants in 2016. These movie theaters often specialize in featuring independent films, second-run movies, cult classics and more.

Alamo Drafthouse
445 Albee Square W #4, Brooklyn, NY 11201

Arguably the most popular of the dine-in movie theaters, the Alamo Drafthouse originated in Texas as a second-run movie theater serving food and beer during the film. It has now expanded to various locations throughout the US with first-run movies and special events. After several hiccups along the way, the Alamo Drafthouse finally opened a location in Downtown Brooklyn. The Alamo Drafthouse Brooklyn menu features everything from the usual popcorn and nachos fare to burgers, salads, sandwiches & more. However, don’t even think about Instagramming your food choice. The Drafthouse is mostly well known for its strict rules, including absolutely no cellphone use during the movie.

Nitehawk Cinema
136 Metropolitan Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11249


Nitehawk Cinema (photo credit: Ty Cole)

Opened in 2011 in Williamsburg, Nitehawk Cinema became the first dine-in movie theater in NYC by overturning a prohibition-era state law banning the sale of alcohol in movie theaters. The cinema features a variety of first-run movies as well as cult classics, independent films, and also runs an array of “Signature Series.” Nitehawk Cinema’s menu features special menu items and cocktails corresponding with the currently playing films. Before the featured film begins, Nitehawk also gets you in the mood by showing old movie clips with similar themes and actors.

iPic Theaters
11 Fulton St, New York, NY 10038
2023 Hudson St, Fort Lee, NJ 07024


iPic Theater (photo credit: Scott Lynch / Gothamist)

This past year, iPic Theaters opened two locations; one in South Street Seaport and one across the George Washington Bridge in Fort Lee. Compared to the previously listed dine-in movie theaters, iPic is focused more on a date night experience with premium priced VIP seats, which are primarily meant for couples. Additionally, some might find the verbal communication between customers and servers (including servers offering to take flash photography during the film) a bit too distracting for focusing on a movie.

40 Bogart St, Brooklyn, NY 11206


Syndicated Theater (photo credit: Michael Tulipan)

Syndicated opened in Bushwick earlier this year, showcasing mostly cult classics with theme oriented movie nights. At just $3-$5 per movie, Syndicated is the most affordable of New York’s dine-in movie theaters. Syndicated’s menu rotates depending on the movies playing and season. The bar itself also has projection screens showing classic movies and television shows, plus hosts special events and parties.

The Metrograph
7 Ludlow St, New York, NY 10002

The Metrograph

The Metrograph (photo credit: Alexander Wagner)

The Metrograph opened earlier this year as an independent movie theater inspired by the 1920s golden age of cinema. While you cannot order food to your seat while watching a movie, the theater includes a restaurant and bar, the Metrograph Commissary, for one to enjoy a a meal before or after the film. The Metrograph even includes a bookstore with film related books and journals to peruse, making it an immersive experience for any cinephile.

With more dine-in theaters set to open, including a second location for Nitehawk in Park Slope, there is sure to be no shortage of options for dinner and a movie in NYC.

Need a ride to any of these theaters? Reserve now with Dial 7 to take you to any of these locations and beyond.

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