Friday, January 07, 2005

Stroll up Smith

Today I decided to take it a bit easy and stroll up a street not far from me. The street has a history, just recently becoming one of the newer gentrified areas that are springing up all over. I still have plenty more bars to hit on this little stretch, but here are the ones I hit today.

28) Smithwick's

Well, it is on Smith Street, but they also serve Smithwick's Imported Irish Ale, which is what I had. This is a nice comfortable Irish bar with the requisite red-headed, female type, bartender. A couple of tables in a glassed in entryway with a Christmas tree still up looked like a nice place to have a bite to eat.

This place had a long bar with a few high tables behind the bar stools for sitting and having a bite to eat, and a bigger eating area in the back.

Three TVs behind the bar with sports on all of them. I am becoming addicted to women's pool

29) Sherwood's

This place has to be seen to be believed. The location used to be a furniture store or something so you can still sit in one of the show windows and have a drink or two and be part of the fixtures. I had an old Bally Playboy pinball machine in perfect working order and so much interesting stuff decorating the place they could charge admission. This place is a real hang-out for French expatriates (the neighborhood boasts a French population of 75,000).

Bartender and I chatted for a good half hour about then neighborhood, other French bars (that I will get to later in my journey) and life in general. If you are ever in the neighborhood you really should stop by.

I had a Dewars and soda. I was going to have a brandy and 7up but the bartender couldn't find any cheap brandy.

30) Panino'teco 275

This is a very nice, small, restaurant and bar. The bartender was very friendly and after talking to him a bit about the neighborhood he recommended a book, "Motherless Brooklyn" by Jonathon Lethem that I should read.

The bar was covered with very nicely done decoupages of what looked to be 1930s to 1940s European erotic postcards. Worth going into just to look at the bar. It turns out the guy who did the original work dropped in to the place not too long ago and they are trying to get him to do an expansion of the bar. Artwork on the wall way by one of the owner's mothers. Also very interesting.

Only problem with this trek is that you end up in places that you would like to spend more time in, or go back, to but can't. At least for a year, or a thousand bars, whichever comes first.

31) Brazen Head

This place is relatively new and I used to be able to see it from my apartment window. They have since built a Brooklyn Law School Dormitory between us. I live in a neighborhood of explosive growth.

Best thing about this place is that they usually have a couple of cask conditioned ales available. I had the Victory Hopdevil and it was very good indeed. The bartender (female) acted as though she really didn't want to be there and spent the majority of her time talking loudly to a friend of her's at the bar about stuff I really wasn't interested in. I think I just came here on a bad day because usually the staff is quite friendly and they generally have a few good cask conditioned ales as well a good selection of draft beers. In fact once a year they have a week-end devoted to cask conditioned ales and you can drink your fill. The manager, Lou, also puts on a dynamite Stew with Lou night where you get free stew made by Lou.