Friday, April 08, 2005

Tribeca Trip

A trip to Tribeca, the new up-scale neighborhood where the elite meet and greet. Not that I met any of the elite, but then I am a man on a mission. For those of you who may not know, Tribeca is an acronym for "Triangle Below Canal," Canal being a street that runs from the Hudson River to the East River (as most streets in Manhattan do) and that once separated Chinatown from Little Italy. Little Italy has shrunk over the years and Chinatown is now on both sides of Canal, but still, primarily, below, or to the south, of it. Tribeca is to the West of Chinatown.

374)Tribeca Tavern

This bar, 247 West Broadway, has two entrances, one on West Broadway and one on 6th Avenue. 6th Avenue takes a bit of a jog in this area so the block that Tribeca Tavern is on is not overly wide. The entrance to the bar side is on West Broadway. The entrance to the side with the pool table is on 6th Avenue. It has a large, old wooden bar with bar stools with black vinyl-padded seats. The bar has a nice brass rail. There are 17 beers on tap with the pulls mounted on a nice brass fixture. There is wood and glass shelving behind the bar and it is lit with red track lights. A small table surrounded by oversize stuffed chairs is next to the bar-side door. Wooden pew-like benches are against the wall behind the bar stools and marble-topped tables sit in front of them with chairs on the other side. The walls are old brick.

The back room, with the pool table, has a sofa and some large round tables with chairs. Little Japanese lanterns hang over the entry to another small room with large stuffed chairs and a couple of end tables. Larger, round Japanese lanterns hang from the ceiling in that room.

I had an Old Speckeled Hen, on draft. One of my favorites but you don't find it too often.

375) Della Rovere

Located on 250 West Broadway, this place has only been open a little over two months. It is another fancy place that has been changing the look of Tribeca. It has a nice, wide, dark-wood bar (I suspect it is wide so people can eat at it). Behind the bar and to the left is a metal spiral staircase that leads up to a narrow metal walk-way where there is a large selection of wines stored in wine racks. One end of the walk-way is widened and there is a table there where "special guests" can dine. There is mirror backed shelving behind the bar with a large liquor selection. Interestingly enough, although they have four beers on draft, the pulls are plain black so you have to ask the bartender what kind of beer they have. The place has nice pale-yellow walls and draped windows. There was a very nice looking back dining area and the menu looked interesting (there were oysters on ice at one end of the bar). I will try to get back here for dinner one day.

The bartender, Nate, was a very pleasant younh man and it turned out he was from Minneapolis, where I grew up. We chatted a bit and I found out that he had played professional football (soccer to us) in Romania for three years. He still plays and also coaches. I spent so much time talkng to him that I didn't take very copious notes about the place.

I had a Paulner Heffeweiss, draft, drawn with the mysterious black handled pull.

376) Buster's Garage

Well, this place on 180 West Broadway probably was a commercial garage. It certainly is large enough to have been one. Behind the bar is the largest television set that I have ever seen in a bar and there are two slightly smaller ones on each end. Another four regular sized televisons are mounted on either side of the large one in the middle. The ceiling is quite high and knotty pine with an interesting, and hard to describe light fixture hanging above the bar. There is dark wood paneling behind the bar that give the place a bit of a rec-room feel. A stepped shelf behind the bar holds the liquor and there is a large freezer with a sliding glass door where they keep their beer mugs chilling. There is a firehouse nearby and from the look of the memorabilia on the wall behind the bar this is probably a hang-out for off duty smoke eaters.

The bathroom is up a long, long flight of stairs. There is also a small outdoor area up there with a jacuzzi. Someone was using it, so it wasn't just for show. The place must be successful because the owners are opening up a Mexican themed bar and restaurant right next door.

I had a draft Pilsner Urquell.

377) Landmarc

Another of the upscale bars and restaurants common to this neighborhood. It is a fairly small place with a circular bar with a wooden top and metallic front. Kind of mod-looking bar-chairs with pea-soup green seats. That color scheme is carried through to the booths that line a greenish-blue plaster wall. The wall on the other side is old brick with an interesting copper-hued somewhat flat sculpture hanging on it. It is lit by small spots hanging from the heating and cooling duct. There are almost floor to ceiling windows in front. Ten fairly small tables for dining fill out the place.

I had a Maker's Mark Manhattan and called it a day.

A pleasant enough stroll, although not overly productive. With 377 for the year I have only 623 left to go.


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