Thursday, April 28, 2005

Tribeca Again

Got to love this little neighborhood. Just so many places to go. I had a decent day today and think I am going back one more time tomorrow.

448) Nathan Hale’s Bar

On 6 Murray Street, very close to the Park Place subway stop, is this somewhat typical Irish bar. The wooden bar has a black top and a heavy looking paneled front. It also has a brass rail. Nine beers on tap out of spigots mounted on three brass stations. Brown wooden bar chairs. The bar has a wooden overhang with recessed spot lights. The front of the overhang is decorated with framed soccer shirts and those pennant scarf things. Mirrors and shelves behind the bar with a small wooden cabinet on the left side. Everything sits on top of wooden cabinets that hold glasses, fruit juice, and condiments. Dark wood paneling and dark mustard yellow walls. Wooden floors and a gray ceiling. A couple of neat illuminated English beer signs, Boddington’s and Newcastle, extend out from the walls where the dining area starts. A few televisions but not a lot of decorations. A pennant proclaims NATHAN HALE’S OFFICIAL HOME OF THE METROSTARS AND U.S. SOCCER. Two Irish whisky dispensers behind the bar. There is a dartboard up front but you would have to move a couple of tables to use it.

I had a gin and tonic.

449) 2 Rivers

Just down the block is another place with a black topped bar. This bar top was shiny though. The front was smooth wood and there was a footrest. The bar chairs are black. Two small sets of shelves behind the bar hold the glasses and liquor. Another two shelves mounted on the red and yellow wall hold a few more bottles. There are several mirrors in ornate gold frames on the wall with the three higher ones angles so you get a view of the place. Ornate, somewhat globular lights hang above the bar and a small stained glass hangs from the ceiling in the back. There is original artwork, for sale, hanging on the walls and some small, framed Broadway playbills hanging high on the back wall just below another mirror. There were a few yellow booths up front.

I had a gin and tonic.

450) Murray Bar and Restaurant

Moving across the street and up a bit at 17 Murray Street was this place that had a kind of a 1950’s feel to it. Pale yellow walls with yellowish, inverted mushroom shaped lights hanging over the good sized wooden bar. A black foot rest and mostly black bar chairs (the back rest was more of a dark brown). A nice long, old wood and mirror cabinet combination behind the bar. Coolers and shelves below with a cabinet with glass shelves on top at each end. Two large mirrors between them with tiered shelves for the liquor in front of them. Toulouse Lautrec posters and French liquor posters hang on the walls in the back dining area. A gray tile floor and a vacant looking nook at the street-side of the bar. There is a window in it and it looks like something has just been removed. Perhaps it is being remodeled. A couple of old clocks, one looking like an old school clock and the other looking like a larger version but with the face and hands only, no frame. Two televisions, one showing CNN and one showing ESPN.

I had a gin and tonic.

451 20/20 Lounge

Not far away, (Is this a great street, or what?) at 20 Murray Street is the 20/20 Lounge. A really neon looking place. Panels of back lit colored plastic line the space above the bar and to the left. Inverted cone-shaped shades cover yellow, rose, and turquoise lights over the leather topped wooden bar with a wood topped footrest. The wall behind the somewhat Asian looking bar chairs with wine-colored brocade fabric seats has neat blue lights and plastic squares of red and blue. The back room has a fluorescent mural of Latin musicians. There are more blue lights back there as well. A fun looking place and I enjoyed myself.

I had a Tanqueray and Gin (the bartender talked me into a name brand here).

452) Shore

Moving down the street a bit to 41 Murray Street is this place that, yes, does have a bit of a shore look to it even though it is in downtown Manhattan. An old dark wood bar with a brass rail and rattan and black metal chairs. A large part of the bar has a Plexiglas covered ice bin with oysters. Sitting on top of the Plexiglas covering are several small model sailboats. The sides and back of this has a wide metal surface for opening them. In front the bar is wider so you can sit there and eat your opened in front of you oysters.

There is old dark wood cabinetry behind the bar with coolers on the bottom and mirrored shelves holding the liquor above. Square, fabric covered lights hang over the area behind the bar while small round spots with little disk shades illuminate the bar itself. White brick walls on one side and a raised dining area in back with red walls and black paned windows. Lots of little, and not so little, fishing pictures hang on the wall. One neat booth is built into what looks like an old elevator.

I had a Beefeater and tonic.

453) A&M Roadhouse

Still on Murray Street, but a bit further down at 57, is another Tribeca roadhouse with a real roadhouse look to it. A big wood bar with a brass rail and a combination of wooden bar chairs and metal bar stools with black seats. Brick walls in the back where there is a pool table. Lots of neon bar sighs and one large “Ben Caffrey’s Pic-A-Rib” sign with a large neon pig. There is a good-sized display of hot sauces in a shelf mounted on the wall. Wooden coolers with wooden doors below wooden shelves behind the bar. The shelves hold the liquor supply, glasses and, more stuff. A collection of Susan B. Anthony dollars, shot glasses, fire department and police department patches, stuff. There are sport caricatures mounted on the over hang hanging over the bar. Tables in the back where the walls are brick and there is a hammerhead shark mounted overhead. Neon beer signs on the ceiling and a wood floor. Stop in, you will like it. Friendly people.

I had a gin and tonic.


Headed over to Warren Street and at 22 Warren Street found this British restaurant and bar. It has a modern looking dark wood bar and brown wood stools with mustard colored vinyl seats. A brick wall behind the bar with mounted wooden shelves and a mirror. There is a refrigeration unit with glass doors. Pictures of London cityscapes are hung on the pale green walls behind the stools. Interesting double rounded cone lights over the bar gave off a kind of a keep-the-mosquitoes-away yellow glow. There are nice looking booths in the back. A fairly small place and I was the only customer.

455) Spaghetti Western

There are just so many bars in this little area that it kind of blows your mind. I was actually headed for the subway and home when I passed, or, almost passed, this place at 59 Reade Street. It is an Italian restaurant with a old wood bar and a black footrest. The same kind of puffed out cylindrical lights that I have seen before hung over the bar. Dark yellow wall and mirrors behind the bar were framed with heavy wooden shelves. Angled mirrors above lights in the back. The lights look like they belong in Grand Central Station, quite ornate. Black overhead fans and a yellow, what looked to be fake tin, ceiling. The bartender was the pinkest bartender that I have ever seen, pink jacket, pink blouse, pink skirt, pink glasses. Just really, really pink.

I had a Tanqueray Ten martini, a drink to seal my doom after a day like today, and headed to the subway and home.

A good day of drinking but with a bit of a sad note to it. One of the reasons that I hung around as late as I did was to wait for a bar named the Orange Bear to open. It was a really nice dive bar, and the mysterious Chinese lady once knew the owner. But, alas, I was informed that the place is now closed. If anyone has any information about the fate of this fine establishment, please let me know.

But, anyway, I hit eight bars today for a year-to-date total of 455 leaving 545 to go. My more immediate goal, of course, is number 500 on May 14th. I need to hit 44 more before then.


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