Monday, July 23, 2007

A Night Out With Friends

A couple of friends of mine, Frank and Kathy, came all the way to Brooklyn from Manhattan to have a few drinks and dinner. I don't know why I have no problem getting to Manhattan from here, but people seem to think if is difficult to get to Brooklyn from there. Only about half a dozen or more subway lines converge within walking distance of where I live. Hell, even the LIRR has a terminal within walking distance.

But, I digress. Maybe nobody in Manhattan really likes me that much.

We met up at O'Keefe's, a bar about two blocks from me and about two blocks from the subway.


I have written about this place before. It is convenient, opens early, and charges a reasonable price for their beer. It used to be a much seedier place when I first started going there, but then Downtown Brooklyn used to be a lot seedier too. The place still has its moments, but has a big contingency of Brooklyn Law School students on weekend nights. During the day it is a mixed crew of dedicated drinkers. It is a good place to pop into for a few.

I had a difficult time convincing the bartender to let me take her picture and then, after she finally consented, I managed to misplace her name.

Bashful (and anonymous) Bartender

I ordered up a beer, a Brooklyn IPA I think, but I wasn't taking notes and was mostly chatting with my friends.

Bar Man Beer and Frank

My friend Kathy and The Mysterious Chinese Woman preferred wine to beer.

Kathy and Mysterious Chinese Woman

We were going to take a bit of a walk around the neighborhood and then pick a restaurant to get dinner. I suggested we head up Smith Street to see what we could see.

We didn't get far before we came to Trout. Now this place has been around for awhile and is part of a bar complex that also includes Gravy and Pacifico. Somehow they are also all connected to the pizzaria next door to Gravy. They kind of occupy the whole extended corner of Smith and Pacific. All are kind of funky in a bit of a contrived way (except for the pizzaria, which is genuinely funky) but for some reason I have never been into Trout before. I figured this was as good a time as any to pop in.

Trout and The Crowd

It is designed to kind of have a fishing shack look to it and I guess it pulls it off if your fishing shack also doubles as a junk yard. Not a bad look.

Fishing Shack/Junk Yard Funk

The Mysterious Chinese Woman said it looked a bit like my apartment. I pointed out that in my apartment I had glasses made out of glass.

Bar Man, Beer, and Plastic

I think I had a Brooklyn Lager this time around. The place was okay, but I don't like to drink my beers out of plastic unless it is a necessity. It shouldn't be a necessity in a bar. I might give it one more shot to try out the food. I have eaten at Pacifico and the food was decent and the portions huge. I did have one bad experience there, however. It was on Cinco de Mayo, 2006 and you could check out the cause of my dissatisfaction if you are interested. Anyway, I bring this up because I ended eating at Bar Tabac that day. And that is where we went to eat tonight as well.

I have written about Bar Tabac numerous times so I won't go into it here. Suffice it to say that everyone enjoyed their meals. My hanger steak was great and of course the mussels that we shared were delicious, as always. I still maintain they are the best I have ever had in a restaurant.

No pictures though, everyone said they had had enough and we were to just sit down and have a dinner like normal people. I was flattered that they thought we could.

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