Archive for October, 2013
St. Marks Pl. btw 1st Ave. and Ave. A
Decent sized bar with seats on the edges and a good sized place to stand in the middle. It doesn’t really stand out from its neighbors with the exception of it being more subdued. Service is good, 20’s and 30’s crowd. Above average beers at slightly above average prices, taste fine.
2nd Ave. btw 9th and 10th St.
While they have Jamaican beers on tap, and some decorations that might remind some people of Jamaica (it reminded me more of New Orleans), that’s really the only Jamaican part of the bar. Decent sized bar that’s elevated (literally) above the other Second Avenue bars on this street. Crowd is still the same as every other neighboring bar (mid-20’s, business kids, and NYU kids) but it’s definitely more subdued. Caribbean taps, average prices, taste fine.
Stuvesant St. btw 9th St. and 3rd Ave.
Hidden bar within a sushi restaurant. Walk up the stairs, hook a U-turn, hope that it’s not packed (which it usually becomes after 7 PM), and step into a small yet roomy space that could probably hold only about 30-35 people. Many different types of cocktails, service is good, average price for cocktails (~12), taste alright.
76th St. btw 1st and York Ave.
I’ve been told by several people to check this place out. Meh. A dark space that has a lot of stools at its lengthy bar, but not much space behind it, so it gets a little tight. There are some tables in the back, but it’s for having a meal. It’s just your basic, average bar, with good service, mixed crowd of young and old. They serve all British beers/ales/lagers, so that’s a plus. British beers, slightly above average prices, taste fine.
Bleeker St. btw Lafayette St. and Bowery
I’m hesitant to write this up because it’s not really a bar, but I went and I’m writing, so there. This is basically a live music venue downstairs and performance space on the main floor. As far as the bar goes, there’s a decent amount of space broken up by lots of stairs, so good luck during a crowded show. Service is good, above average beers at above average prices, taste fine.
Bowery and Great Jones St.
Not much table room in the back, but a good amount of bar space up front. Crowd is mid 20’s to 30’s, service is friendly, kind of a place to come and grab a quiet drink before moving on. Above average beers at above average prices, taste fine.
Bowery btw 3rd and 4th St.
If you don’t see a door or window, look for the people painted on the walls outside. Once inside, it’s a decent sized place that is empty around happy hour but fills up as the night goes on. Bartenders are friendly, mixing cocktails with a few beers on tap. Crowd is a little older than its neighbors (late 20’s to 30’s). Above average beers and cocktails, slightly above average prices on the beers, average prices on cocktails (~11), taste fine.
1st Ave, and 7th St.
Laid out like a mix between a soda shoppe and diner, complete with old school jukebox, this hipster bar is usually crowded and yet can range from noisy to quiet all the same. If you don’t get one of the tables or a stool at the bar, you’re just going to get shoved around in here. Bartenders are nice, the crowd is locals and hipsters, though the two are quickly becoming one and the same. Above average beers, at slightly above average prices, taste fine.
Park Ave. btw 28th and 29th St.
The newer of the two Gansevoort hotel rooftops, and the lesser of the two. This one isn’t as pretentious, and maybe a buck cheaper on drinks, but it’s kind of like a Jersey Shore bar on a roof, with a lot of stairs and not as much open space. The crowd is really mixed, from young, to business kids, to coworkers, to an older crowd of guys mixed with mid 40’s Bon Jovi fans from Jersey. Average drinks and mixed drinks, above average prices, taste fine.
35th St. btw 5th and 6th Ave.
While there is an empty bar downstairs, make your way through the labyrinth of the top guest floor to a staircase (good luck finding it) into basically one big soft bench lined roof top that’s covered. Pluses, it’s big, not a lot of people, mixed crowd of all sorts, and a really good close-up view of the Empire State Building (as if you can’t see it from anywhere else in the city…). Negatives, it just feels a little run down. So if you want a quiet rooftop to relax, this might be for you. Average beers, average prices, taste fine.
26th St. and Park Ave.
This bar basically looks as if they took a rooftop studio apartment, gutted it, put some booths out and added a giant giraffe statue. All that aside (though its kind of peaceful), it’s pretty easy to get a table, though there is decent room outside of the seating area. Service is pretty good, crowd is a mix of business kids and hotel guests. Average beers and mixed drinks, slightly above average prices, taste fine.
38th St. btw 5th and 6th Ave.
As far as rooftop bars go, this one is a good mix of lounge and bar, meaning you get the cozy mixed with people who go to lounges. Business kids, B&T’s and a 20-30’s crowd hang up here on the decent sized outdoor space that doesn’t provide a view of much besides the Empire State Building. A plus is a downstairs bar to wait in just in case it’s too crowded up top, which it usually is. Service is pretty good, average/above average/wine/cocktails for their respective average prices, taste fine.