Archive for November, 2011
7th Ave. btw Charles and 10th St.
Not as big as its uptown namesake. It’s quieter, more subdued, and definitely not your typical West Village crowd, meaning there are B&T’s here…how did they find it!?! Most games are covered by the TV’s all over the place, good amount of seating, alright tasting beers at average prices.
8th Ave. btw 40th and 41st St.
It’s kind of the same idea as Track’s (being right in the middle of a major transportation hub), but cleaner and smaller. The smallest of the chain, you still get all of your homegrown taps and the good food. Pretty much a B&T crowd, Heartland prices ($7 or $8) for a pint, tastes fine.
Bleeker St. and LaGuardia Pl.
The new kid on the block. This place used to be Senior Swanky’s, and now it’s just swanky. I guess you would call this a gastropub, but while there are no hipsters present, pretentiousness abounds. They have your above average taps that taste fine, a little above average prices, and while this doesn’t draw your typical crowd for this area, it’s jumped completely to the other side of the spectrum.
3rd Ave. btw 28th and 29th St.
This place used to be Maker’s, and now it’s the brighter version of its former self. The crowd is very young, the music system is loud and changing halfway through songs, and the bartenders are pretty slow. I guess it changed to keep up with the new population in the neighborhood, but I think it was better the way it was. After all, it’s good to have a quiet port in a B&T storm once in a while! The beers were average prices, tasted fine.
34th St. and 8th Ave.
While it’s a mirrored layout of Local on 33rd, it’s a completely different set up. They’re going for beachside cabana/Mexican cantina…riiiiight. So let’s start with what is Mexican about it, the margarita’s…basically a non alcoholic sno-cone in a glass. As for beer, average tasting taps at average prices, attractive staff, pretty easy to get a seat.
South Street Seaport
This is the indoor bar inside the Seaport, and worth the walk up 3 floors to get to. And yes, though I said walk, it’s really an escalator I’ve seen it overflowing during a pub crawl, and then mildly crowded once the weather turns colder. Lots of space, friendly bartenders, average tasting beers at average prices.
South St. and Fulton St.
Don’t know why it’s taken me so long to visit this part of the chain, but it’s up there with the Union Square location as my favorite of the bunch. Mostly filled with tourists, usually easy enough to get a table, service is attentive, drinks are you regular Heartland brews at average prices.
Pearl St. btw Coentis and William St.
On a street where every bar is usually packed inside and outside, I was surprised at how empty this place was. I mean, it has the same amount of TV’s, maybe slightly smaller than the others, attractive wait staff, friendly bartender. Maybe it needs a better sign out front? Who knows, I’m not a marketer. Bud light and above average types of beers (Chimay, etc.) on tap at average prices, taste fine.
19th St. btw 5th and 6th Ave.
I would call it a speakeasy if it was hidden in some way from the public eye, but no, right out in the open, and probably the only bar that resembles a speakeasy that doesn’t have to call itself one to drum up business. That being said, it’s usually packed in here after work, pretentious crowd, and no taps. The drinks are a little above average prices, taste good, really good service, can feel a little claustrophobic.
2nd Ave. btw 8th and 9th St.
This place is huge, and I’m not just talking about being compared to its neighbors, there’s a ton of space in here. That’s one of the few perks of this place. The crowd is diverse, mostly young, and with two fights between girls over the course of a visit, what more could I ask for!?! They use the space for movies on the walls, on occasion, you feel a little sketch walking past the “lounge” area to get to the bathroom, but the bartenders are nice, good specials, average beers at average prices.
10th Ave. and 19th St.
If I’m classifying Rose O’Grady’s a bar, I have to count this too. It’s quiet, outdoor seating up front, and a bit more emphasis on eating…I’m talking myself out of this even as I write it! A good sized bar, TV’s, nice bartender, lot’s of staff moving around behind you. I would classify this place as more for the locals who want a quiet drink and do not want to go a few blocks south and dive into the meatpacking insanity. Regular pints, taste fine and at average prices.
Orchard St. btw Stanton and Houston St.
While I came on a weeknight, it still drew a good sized crowd that wasn’t overly hipster. Bouncer up front, along with a few couches, while the rest of the people cram along the bar space. It’s a long bar, decent amount of space, with a huge staircase to the second floor small space, and I’ve seen a few people stumble their way up and down. The music is pretty good, the beers average prices and taste fine.
Amsterdam Ave. and 109th St.
I like it! It’s a really laid back, average sized bar that draws a crowd ranging from locals to Columbia people, all in that good 23-35 range. Lots of TV’s for watching every game available, good pitchers specials and average priced pints for average beers, good food, can get a tiny bit warm (something my Polish friend swears was the reason for her falling asleep…), but definitely a nice hang out, for lack of better words.
Rivington St. btw Clinton and Suffolk St.
Now, I’m going to preface this review by saying that though it’s the same people as Sunburnt Cow and Sunburnt Calf, this place does not stand alone as a bar without food, so I’m writing this place up because I like the other two so much. Came here for brunch, the booze is still good, service a little slow, not overwhelmingly hipster-y, average prices (brunch specials are very good too) for your Fosters, etc. and they taste fine.
45th St. btw Madison and 5th Ave.
This bar is a mix of Upper East Side sports bar with a Business clientele feel, and even though that’s redundant, you know what I mean. The crowd draws your usual after work Business crowd, and then as the night moves on, the B&T’s come in to mix with whoever is still avoiding going home. Lots of TV’s with sports, decent amount of space, karaoke on certain nights where the person running it feels the need to sing every other song (lame), average tasting beers at average prices.
10th St. and 4th St.
I would be doing a disservice by calling it an “upscale” sports bar, so how about a clean sports bar, one that happens to be located in the West Village. Now, if you don’t get a booth or spot at the small bar, you’ll be standing in a small space…make that a small, very crowded space. A bonus is the good looking fellow drinkers, though 99.99% are taken, so enjoy staring! Other than that, good service, your above average taps that taste fine at average prices, and the foods pretty good too.
45th St. btw 5th and 6th Ave.
As my curly-haired friend said “This place attracts and certain clientele, and that clientele sucks”. Yes, B&T’s and business kids are among the frequenters here, including some of the more socially awkward people I’ve ever seen in a bar. Do they come for the “dive” feel, the huge wheel behind the bar that doles out free drinks to the winner (which I rarely see used), the off-tasting taps? Who knows, but at least the prices are good. Average prices, so-so tasting taps.
45th St. btw 6th and 7th Ave.
It’s rare I like a Times Square bar, but this place has changed my mind. Lots of open space, very friendly staff, and I was given a free pen on the way out…sold! The bar is the place I picture Two Face hanging out for a drink, one side of it is shiny, quiet, subdued; the other side is brick, louder, equally as good. The food was also pretty good too. Average prices for pints that tasted pretty good.
48th St. btw 5th and 6th Ave.
This place used to be called Channel 4, and though it’s now part of the Pig & Whistle franchise, they didn’t bother to change any of the stuff on the walls, so don’t worry, you can still sit under that creepy picture of Jay Leno and Bono while having a pint. And I thought there would be more tourists in here due to its location, but I guess because it looks inconspicuous and is usually hidden by trucks, they don’t notice it. So instead you have a younger crowd, most of them toasted by 9 PM. Average pints, average prices.