Weekend Wisely: 5 Restaurant & Nightlife Apps You Need Right Now

Chris Ambroselli
Hailing from the supremely Midwestern town of Kalamazoo, Chris brings his sense of adventure to the flannel-clad streets of Brooklyn as he navigates the apex of his quarter life crisis. His parents once said that "brunch aficionado" and "cocktail enthusiast" aren't actually real hobbies, so he made it his career. While he isn't wining and dining the startup scene with Hooch (hooch.co) or scouring the internet for trashy GIF's to use in his articles, Chris can most likely be found waiting for the ever-elusive G-Train.

For urban-dwelling millennials, our social lives center largely around going out to eat, catching up over happy hour, hitting the club, and experiencing the dizzying array of culinary delights, art, live music, and general debauchery that big-city life has to offer.

However, having a poppin’ social life isn’t all sunshine and champagne-showers.

After all, in a city like New York, where you’re most likely working to afford upwards of $1,200 a month to inhabit a glorified storage-closet nestled conveniently at the intersection of a six-story walkup and do-you-think-we-could-sublease-our-bathroom, every dollar and night out counts.

Call me crazy, but between endless hours at the office, outrageous rent, and a seemingly infinite amount of planning involved when it’s actually time to hit the town and celebrate life, the stakes for having the perfect night out can be higher than Rihanna at the Met Ball.

But not for long…

From cutting the line to splitting the check, these five groundbreaking apps are here to turn down the drama when it’s time to turn up, revolutionizing the way that millennials go out:

 

Reserve

Nothing screams ‘night-ruiner’ like the panic and anxiety induced by that awkward moment when your party has to actually pay for the delicious delicacies you’ve just inhaled.

Enter Reserve: Your very own fine dining concierge right in your pocket; this innovative app hooks users up with exclusive, hassle-free access to restaurant reservations, in top dining hotspots like New York City, Los Angeles, Boston, and San Francisco (soon to add DC, Chicago, London).

Simply provide your time window and party-size, and BOOM — Reserve handles all the dirty-work and books the perfect restaurant, so you can worry about what matters — great food and company!

 

Wine ‘N Dine

So we all probably have a few too many foodie pics clogging up our diverse Insta-feeds. As the social media platform evolves, however, it has become a bit of a faux pas to #foodstagram.

That’s where Wine ‘N Dine comes in: People are fascinated by the food that sustains us, and as such, have paved the way for a new social network exclusively surrounding pictures of food and drinks.

This visual feast functions similarly to Instagram, but celebrates food in all of its calorie-laden glory, allowing its users to share with their followers what to eat, where to get it, and to discover new and exciting places to nosh.

Even the biggest celebrities in the world (I’ll give you one guess as to who user ‘KimKardashianWest’ is) are hungry to share their favorite treats and where to get them on Wine ‘N Dine.

 

Hooch

Hearkening back to the exclusivity and in-the-know nature of the Prohibition era speakeasy, the geniuses behind Hooch, as the namesake implies, have cultivated a private cocktail society for millennials at the cutting edge of cool. Membership not only unlocks the gates to the historically elusive, see-and-be-seen world of NYC’s premier restaurants, lounges, and clubs, but also guarantees the royal treatment.

With a simple tap of the ‘pour’ button while perusing a participating venue’s menu, the bartender serves up a complimentary cocktail of your choosing. The best part? $9.99 Monthly membership dues make this proverbial-cup refill every day of the week, for less than the cost of a standard Manhattan well drink.

In addition to exposing its users to the best bars and restaurants throughout the city (it even lets you discover by neighborhood), Hooch makes it easy to expand your horizons and sip on an unexpected concoction, all while experiencing NYC’s intoxicating nightlife scene in ways you’ve never previously thought possible.

 

Flux

From even knowing where to head for an epic night, to calculating and accounting for factors like male-female crew ratios, heel-height, cover charges, ticket printing, maximum acceptable line-time, cash only, and negotiating with shady promoters, going out can be quite the tumultuous process.

Fret not, for Flux is here to save the day (or night, if you will)! Developed by a team of nightlife-loving Dartmouth graduates, Flux is redefining what it means to be in-the-know.

Offering members exclusive, on-demand access to the most prestigious clubs, lounges, bars, and even concerts or insider-only happenings throughout the city, Flux users bypass the stress – and the line – allowing you to arrive in style, even when booking last minute.

 

TableList

Watch out, rich-and-famous club-dwellers: TableList is democratizing the bottle service scene with instant, on-demand bookings for the hottest tables and VIP sections across Boston, Foxwoods Casino (in Connecticut), Las Vegas, San Francisco, the Hamptons, and of course — New York City.

In case you don’t already know what table/VIP/bottle service is, it’s essentially the penultimate luxury nightlife experience. Aside from looking and feeling extremely cool as you bypass the bouncer, skip the line at the bar, and enjoy your party and friends in style as (often sparkler-clad) bottles of your choosing come directly to your private table (come on, you know you’re gonna Instagram that). Booking a VIP experience with TableList is the hassle-free way to create a memorable special occasion.

 

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