Archive for February, 2014
2nd Ave. and 13th St.
Used to be Nightingales, but now you can actually see the inside from the outside! Gone are the always curtained atmosphere and the weird lounge vibe. Hers now stands a spacious pub, though for a new spot it could use a good airing out. It’s basically just your run of the mill bar, sports on TV, friendly service, and the crowd is college kids mixed with a dash of Hipster and business kid. Average taps at average prices, taste fine.
University Pl. btw 11th and 12th St.
I have to imagine that this place is trying to be The Max for NYU, with Max serving beer of course. It’s a noisy bar that draws in students, an older crowd, an…you know, basically anybody looking for beer and a burger. Decent size space, service is friendly, above average beers at above average prices, taste fine.
7th Ave. btw 47th and 48th St.
While most New Yorkers loathe walking through Times Square, staring at it from a few floors up isn’t half bad. The hard part is getting a seat for this view. This hotel bar is on the second floor of the Renaissance Hotel and it’s made up of two rooms: the main room is a decent sized room that is always packed, and so you move to the second room, which has about a dozen seats and is more of a waiting around area until you can get into the first room. Crowd is all tourists, not much to this place at all except the view, cocktails that are roughly ~$13, taste alright.
3rd Ave. and 94th St.
One big bright TV/window filled room. A simple bar filled with tables and bar stools that is usually packed any day of the week. Crowd is your typical young Upper East Side resident, this place is really trying to present a more upscale watering hole. Service is fine, slightly above average beers, slightly above average prices, taste fine.
La Biblioteca (3rd Ave. and 41st St.)
Basement lounge below Zengo that is trying to be a lot more upscale then it actually is. Also, not entirely sure where the name comes from as there is really nothing here that’s Spanish aside from the tequila, which every bar has. Anywho, most people congregate around the bar (duh), but there’s this whole empty room on the way to the bathroom that needs to be utilized more than looking like a fancy doctor’s waiting room. Crowd is all business kids. Bottled beers and mixed drinks, slightly above average prices, taste fine.
University Pl. btw 12th and 13th St.
Adult Playground brings up so many other images, so I’m going to call this Mid-Twenties’ Putt Putt that charges you for bar games you can pay nothing for elsewhere. Situated above Bowlmor Lanes, this activity bar has your beers, your nine hole putting course, air hockey, shuffleboard, etc… all the while charging a decent penny to play them. This place can get crowded, sometimes it’s closed for events, sometimes you are the only people there (my favorite times!). Average and above average beers, slightly above average prices, taste fine.
51st St. btw Broadway and 8th Ave.
Another member of the cookie cutter “Irish Pub” that seems to abound in Manhattan. It’s basically your after work crowd of business types (old and young) mixed with theater goers. Decent sized space, service is good, sports on TV, just a regular bar really. Average taps at slightly above average prices, taste fine.
26th St. btw 6th Ave. and Broadway
I think it would be fair to call this half bar, half beer hall…well, better upstairs bar, downstairs beer hall. All craft beer menu with plenty of cocktails as well, this venue is going for the old-timey feel, which explains the lack of sound on all of the sports TV’s downstairs (yes, I’m fully aware radio came before TV, just roll with the joke, ok). It really is like two different bars, with a bit of a haughty/pretentious air upstairs and downstairs filled with a more energetic crowd. Crowd is business kids, area workers, 20’s- and 30’s, and people who mix it up with Flatiron Room across the street. Service is good, food is ok, above average drinks at above average prices, taste fine.
23rd St. btw 5th and 6th Ave.
This place used to be Limerick’s, and I guess someone decided this could finally not be a dump anymore. After a good washing, the new place is a lot brighter, more than two people are in here, staff is still friendly, crowd is basically anyone who works in the area and is in for a few drinks before going home. Average beers, slightly above average prices, taste fine.
Mulberry Street btw Grand and Hester St.
If you can find this place on the first try, you’re my hero. On the second or fifth pass, you walk down a few steps, passed the bright red door, and you have a small bar with a decent sized backyard. This nicely polished spot is a cocktail joint that has jumped on the “we don’t have a set cocktail list, but tell me what you’re in the mood for” band wagon. There’s room for about 20 inside, much more out back, service is fine, crowd is 20’s and 30’s, along with those who like the “next hot thing”. Cocktails, above average prices (~$15), taste fine.
60th St. btw 1st and 2nd Ave.
A new craft beer place to hit this lower part of the Upper East Side. Actually, it might be the only one around here. Anywho, it’s a decent sized space, long, tight bar area up front with a few tables in the back. All craft beer, all the time, and lots of it. Service is chatty, crowd is late 20’s-early 30’s, above average beers at above average prices, taste fine.