NEW YORK - Back around the time Andrew Jackson was taking office as the seventh president of the United States, a little bar was opening in Queens. Today, Neir's Tavern is still slinging suds and even making a few movie cameos.
For almost 200 years, Neir's Tavern has been doing the same thing the same way. And its regulars wouldn't have it any other way. Neir's Tavern is one of the oldest bars in America. Some say it is the oldest bar in New York.
A photo from the late 1800s, which includes two members of the Neir family, shows its original facade. Back then, this place was super popular, partly because of its proximity to Union Course Racetrack, directly across the street. During Prohibition, Neir's became a speakeasy. Part of it even contained a bowling alley.
In 2009, Neir's almost closed, but thanks to FDNY Lt. Loy Gordon it found new life. Loy is so passionate about keeping it open that he is getting signatures to petition the city to designate it a landmark.
But until then, Neir's Tavern will keep welcoming New Yorkers of all ethnicities.
Neir's was a favorite of actress Mae West, who for a while lived just blocks away.
And there is even more history. In 2011 part of the Ben Stiller movie "Tower Heist" was filmed here. But it is most known for the watering hole in the movie "GoodFellas." A film scout looking for a phone, stumbled into Neir's, and the rest, as they say, is history.
Now when it comes to food, Neir's has an extensive menu but it is most proud of its GoodFellas burger.
If you stop in, be sure to say hi to Eddie the bartender, who is serving up the coldest beer in New York, thanks to the bar's ancient tap system.
Find Neir's Tavern at 87-48 78th Street in Woodhaven, Queens.