Saturday, July 23, 2005

Partying With The People

Today was a great party that kicked off, for some of us, shortly before noon. Plenty of food and drink. As the day wore on I spotted a bottle of Old Overholt Straight Rye Whiskey. You do don’t see this too often so I picked up the bottle to take a closer look. Fred said that it was a key ingredient in the Delaware Club Cocktail. The Delaware Club is a hunting club that was started by, among others, Fred’s father. Anyway, I said it was too bad that this wasn’t a bar so I could count the drink. Aha, little did I know, there was a bar in the basement, and a good sized bar too.

675) Fred And Shirley’s Dollhouse Bar

Bar Man, Mike, And Hosts Shirley And Fred

The Same Crowd But With Mary Visible

Art, Kathy, Bar Man And Fred

The Mysterious Chinese Woman Makes An Appearance

Well, it might not have been the fanciest bar I have ever been to, but it was a lot better than some, and very, shall we say homey. The clientele was most friendly and the bartender was pretty good too, serving up his special Delaware Club Cocktails. A pretty decent sized L shaped bar with a metal edged yellow Formica top and brown wood front. Regular old, if somewhat mismatched, barstools too. The most notable decoration was the large, elaborately furnished dollhouse that sat at one end of the bar.

I had a Delaware Club Cocktail, Old Overholt Straight Rye Whiskey and Peppermint Schnapps. I actually had several of these and the Mysterious Chinese Woman had to roll me back to the hotel when the night was over(about six blocks away and all downhill). I must make a note to replenish their bar the next time I visit.

Not a bad weekend, a total of four bars making it 675 for the year and leaving 325 to go.

Friday, July 22, 2005

Cooling It In Callicoon

My friends in Callicoon were having a couple of shindigs to celebrate Shirley’s birthday. This is always a great time with a dinner at Eldred Preserve, a restaurant and bar and a lake where you can catch your own fish if you feel so inclined. Then the next day Fred and Shirley throws a great party that is catered by Mr. Willie’s (that was stop number 556) and the food is great. I brought cheesecakes from Juniors. When I go to Callicoon I usually stay at The Western Hotel.

672) The Western Hotel

This hotel was built in 1852 and still retains much of the same feeling of that long ago era. The current owner, a real character named Joe Naughton, has owned the place since 1969 and he and his wife Leona have spent a lot of time and energy selecting antique furniture and fixtures for the tap room, lobby, and dining room. The bar top itself is fairly new looking but I suspect that is just because it is so well taken care of. The front of the bar has a rough brick front and a brass rail The back bar is quite ornate with mirrors and cabinets with glass door at each end. There is kind of a plain red Formica top above coolers with wooden doors and silver latches and handles. A World War II era Marine issue shotgun with a bayonet hangs above the mirrors. The walls are dark red paneling and there is a new television above the jukebox on the wall opposite the bar. I don’t recall ever seeing the old one turned on though and this one was turned off too.

There is an old barber chair off to one side and an upright piano that was being played by a young girl who was attending a wake. Apparently it was just breaking up because there were a number of people at the bar saying there goodbyes. It was one of the cheeriest wakes I had ever seen. In fact I asked the bartender if there was a wedding party going on.

If you ever get to Callicoon be sure to stop in and say “Hi” to Joe. And if you want a place to stay, this is your only choice. Unless you want to stay at the Olympia next door.

I had a glass of Sarnac Pale Ale.

673) Sidetracks - No Mercy Inn

Just down the street a bit is this old small town bar that has been around forever. Although the name and the owner may change, not much else has. It has an old bar with a tile foot rest and chrome bar stools with black leather seats. Monkey’s seem to be everywhere. The owner, Sharon, said she doesn’t even particularly like monkeys but she bought a couple and then friends and customers continue to give her new ones. I particularly liked the large inflated monkey hanging from an airplane that hung over the bar.

The longer you look, the more monkeys you see. There are also some old fireman hats sitting on wooden shelves behind the bar. Lots of accumulated clutter, just like you would expect. Pretty much plywood paneled walls and a light tile ceiling. There are a couple small mirrors behind the bar with art deco style figures of women etched into them. Small metal edged shelves mounted on dividers covered with snapshots hold the liquor.

There is a good sized back room with a pool table, a foosball table, and an electronic dartboard. Lots of tables and chairs to sit at and have a drink when they have live music. Olive Drab was playing tonight.

I had a bottle of Budweiser.

674) Eldred Preserve

Tucked away in the woods is this good-sized restaurant and bar. It has several large dining areas and we had half of one to ourselves for our party. Very nice, with a DJ spinning tunes and great appetizers, shrimp, crab claws, stuffed mushrooms, and, my favorite, troutlings. Troutlings are the house specialty and are little trout about the size of your small finger, lightly battered and deep-fried. Delicious. The food was great too. Bar Man had a wonderful lobster and the prime ribs looked great too.

But, enough of that. People were already noshing at the appetizer table when I got there so I ducked out to the bar for a drink with Alice (she didn't drink though) before joining in the festivities.

Alice, The Bartender And Keeper Of The Squirrels

The bar is kind of a rectangular shape with an extension to the left. It is old and wooden and has a brass rail. Behind to bar was a bulletin board with a lot of fishing lures and there are also several large mounted fish. There is also a large sign that says “Squirrel Corners” and another one that looks like one of those signs with the prancing deer that you see along the road. This one has a squirrel instead with “Squirrel Xng” written on it. The place has a nice hunting lodge feel to it.

I had a quick Tanqueray and tonic and then joined the party.

Thursday, July 21, 2005

Pictures Mostly Retaken

I managed to retake most of the pictures from Monday. The one exception was the picture of the yellow neon bar sign from inside Jackson Hole. For some reason I was not allowed to take an pictures inside the restaurant. I was told it was the policy of the management. When I explained that I had taken one in there the day before the woman I was talking to wanted to know who let me do it. I wasn't about to get anyone in trouble so I said I couldn't remember. I showed her pictures I had taken inside of other restaruants and told them this was the first time that I had not been allowed to do so. I asked what their policy would be if a bunch of people came in and wanted to take pictures of each other. They said that would be okay. I then asked her if they wanted to take pictures of each other in front of the bar sign, would that be okay. She kind of hemmed and hawed and said that might be alright. I asked if she would take a picture of me in front of the bar sign. That, she said, would not be okay. I asked if I came in with a friend, could they take a picture of me in front of the sign. Now she was becoming very unsure of herself and said she would rather not answer that question. Go figure. I asked if I could talk to the manager and she said that she was the acting manager but did not make management decisions. Rather then pursue the point any further I simply took a picture of the sign from outside. Not exactly the same but you get the idea. I just love managers who can't make management decisions and policies that seem to make no sense. Talking to a few other people in the neighborhood I found out that Jackson Hole is part of a chain of restaurants so I guess important decisions like allowing pictures to be taken are made at the corporate level.

Too bad the Mysterious Chinese Woman wasn't with me. Maybe I could have taken a picture of her in front of the sign and then just edited her out.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Uptown, Or Yorkville, Revisited

I headed back to my haunts of Monday to retake the pictures that I had lost when I inadvertently tried to do some editing before copying the image off of my video card. It proved to be an enjoyable day, except for my return visit to Jackson Hole, and I met some interesting people. I also found out that this neighborhood is known as Yorkville.

669) Panorama Café

Located on the corner of 85th and 2nd Avenue is this New Orleans style building with an interesting interior. The wood bar has a wavy top with light wood paneled front. The bar chairs are dark wood with a bluish green vinyl seats. A brass beer station sits on the bar but it is defunct. The handles have been removed and it sits forlorn, unloved and unused. The backbar has three mirrors with tiered shelves in front of the mirrors on each end and single shelf mounted on the mirror above those. These hold, as you might have guessed, the liquor. The middle mirror has a wrought iron shelf like a set of steps going up and coming down. The steps hold nine bottles of single malt scotch and a single bottle of Hennessey. At the summit sits a decorative bottle of Remy Martin X.O. Separating the mirrors and at each end are large patterned metal dividers shaped a bit like vain number twos peering at themselves in the mirrors. A metal wine rack sits to the left of the mirrors. Above the bar back is a panel with green, orange, and red leaf-like designs. There are interesting, and somewhat dangerous looking metal fixtures hanging above the bar. I think it was the pointed bottoms that made me nervous. There is a television at one end of the bar.

Interesting sculptures and mirrors decorate one corner with tables and chairs in front of high-backed red banquettes.

There are a couple of European looking street lights in the main dining area and large windows with light green frames that give the place a light and airy feeling. Interesting metal sculptures hang on the walls between the windows too.

The flooring is dark wood and the ceiling is wood paneled. The walls are red with redwood stained paneling going up about a third of the way. A staircase leads up to another dining area where there is a neat balcony. Sidewalk seating is also available. A smiling Aztec-like sun sculpture greets you as you enter.

I checked out the menu and saw that they had a “wild mushroom” omelet. This got me thinking because last night I had ravioli at Pete’s Waterfront Ale House and it too had “wild mushrooms.” I mean, just how wild can a mushroom be. Are these really mushrooms that someone has foraged in the woods somewhere? If so, what are the qualifications of the forager. If they really are just raised in a cave, can the still be called “wild”? Ah, the things that weigh heavily on the Bar Man’s mind. And while still working on my first drink of the day.

I had a Tanqueray and tonic.

670) Brady’s

Well, things took an interesting turn when I walked into this Irish pub on 2nd Avenue at the corner of 82nd Street. It took me awhile to get a good shot of the place because of street signs and cars. See, Bar Man does try to provide a quality product. Anyway, the bartender, Kevin, asked me if I got a good picture when I ordered my drink. I told him that I did and why I was taking them. He then recognized me from the picture in the New York Post and bought me my drink. Well, a perverse sense of honor force me to buy one myself and then someone else bought me one and then the bartender bought another round. Oof. Not going to be hitting a lot of bars after that.

Kevin, The Friendly And Generous Bartender

This is a fairly small place with brick walls on two sides and little windows in front. The wall opposite the bar has dark wood paneling going up about a third of the way and with a ledge on it for drinks. There is a pool table in the back that has uses other than simply playing a game of pool and a competition dart board. The bar itself is pretty standard with a black linoleum footrest. The wooden bar chairs have black cloth seats. The backbar is an old looking set of wooden shelves in front of mirrors and wooden cabinets. Lots of liquor and stacked martini glasses. Half a dozen televisions and a chalkboard announcing “Free Pool on Sundays” are also behind the bar. Lots of beer and tequila pennants hang about the place and mirrors advertising beer hang on the wall opposite the bar. Amber and yellow stained glass lights hang over the bar and a small rhinoceros head with a green shot glass on his horn hangs on the wall next to the bar.

A squalling child was having his diaper changed on the pool table at one point during my stay, giving this a somewhat homey feeling. Not sure if I would want to just stretch out for a long shot on the table right away though. I do believe it was the bartender’s wife and son so it wasn’t like just strangers come in off the street and do this. At least I hope not.

As you can probably guess from my first paragraph, the bartender was most friendly and we spent a fair amount of time chatting about all sorts of things. He introduced me to some of the other patrons and before I wobbled out it felt like I was a regular. He was obviously very proud of his bar, explaining that it has been around in its current form since 1941, the work that was done on it, the size of his refrigeration units in the basement, and other stuff that I am afraid I have forgotten. We also talked about bars in general and he gave me suggestions for other bars in the neighborhood that I should stop in. I had a genuinely good time and was reluctant to leave. This is certainly a place that I would revisit when time permits.

I had, er, more than one Tanqueray and tonic.

671) Mad River Bar and Grille

Well, Bar Man was not totally side-tracked by Brady’s because I could still see this place looming up on my way to the subway. It wasn’t actually on the way to the subway, but I could see it as I was walking there and it wasn’t that far out of the way. It is on 3rd Avenue between 81st and 82nd Street. I actually had to look into the depths of my soul, or at least glance quickly at the surface, before deciding that I could go in for just one. It was a good decision. The bar has a copper top with a wood foot rest. There is an assortment of bar chairs with torn maroon vinyl seats. A couple of brass beer stations sit on the bar but the selection of beers is a bit mundane. The backbar has some interesting pyramid shaped shelves, mirrors, and standard tiered shelves in front of mirrors holding the liquor. Looking somewhat out of place were small candles amongst the liquor bottles. There is another smaller bar in the back too.

Lot’s of pictures of fish on the walls and a pair of skis on the wall opposite the bar. Mostly brick walls with some wood and green painted plaster in the back. The wood ceiling up front is interesting and there is a pressed tin ceiling in the back. There are tables in the back with an old light fixture hanging overhead that has eight upturned parchment shaded lights. Similar lights were mounted behind the bar. There is a little fireplace in the back that looks like it probably works. I managed to talk the guy next to me, John, into writing a bit about the bar and he agreed to do so if I posted his picture and telephone number so women could call him. I will post his picture but you will have to email me for his telephone number.

John, Looking For Love In All The Write Places

He said he prefers Chinese women (his buddy was Chinese). I mentioned the Mysterious Chinese Woman and his interest level in my mission increased dramatically. Here is what he wrote"

"The bartender John is the best bartender in the city. Also the best wings in the city. For a bar, besides the wings, they have very good bar food. They take grat pains to have excellent food. Great atmosphere. In the end it is just a great bar to spend an afternoon, see a ballgame and have a burger, and realize that life is great."

I didn't try the food, but he got the rest of it down pretty well.

The bartender, whose name is also John, wanted his picture posted too but didn’t say anything about wanting women to call him.

John: "The Best Bartender In The City"

Again, another very friendly bar, both the bartender and the clientele. My resolve to have just one faded and I ended up having two. It is hard to break away when you are having a good time and this place was another one where it was easy to have one. I shall return.

I had a couple of Tanqueray and tonics.

Well, not a bad day. Three bars making 671 for the year and leaving 329 for the year. By the way, Mad River and Still are co-hosting a Booze Cruise tomorrow night. You can find details on Murph's Guide to New York Bars (just use my link). If you check my previous write-up on Still you will see that I really liked that place as well. I would bet this would be one fun boat ride. I would love to go myself but have a prior commitment.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Lunch with the Murph's Guide To NY Bars Guy

I met with Sean Murphy, the guy behind Murph's Guide to New York Bars for lunch today. We met at The Town Tavern where I have already had a beer and counted it towards my 1000. I didn't realize when I was there before that they have an upstairs area with a separate bar. I didn't drink up there though and wouldn't count it again even if I did. My quest shall remain at least somewhat pure. I didn't take a picture the last time so here is one now.

The pile of sand out front is what they removed after putting it down on the floor for some kind of a beach party they had. No nude beach volley ball though, or at least that is what I was told.

I didn't realize until after I talked to Sean that his website also lists a lot of bar related events. I had primarily used it just to look up the locations of bars. He also promotes a lot of events at bars so the home page is a good source of information on fun things to do. I might try to make the Beach Volleybash next Saturday. BBQ, Beach Volleyball and Music. What's not to like. Anyway, here is the website for the Murph's Guide To New York Bars home page.

  • Murph's Guide To New York Bars

  • The other one used to bring you right to the bar lookup section, but I am going to change it.

    Bar Man in his new MURPHGUIDE.COM shirt.

    Monday, July 18, 2005

    Moving Up

    I decided to take my act uptown a bit and explore the area around 86th Street. There are a lot of bars in this area and it is about time that I checked them out. It proved to be a fairly fun day and I will be going back for more in the near future.

    Tomorrow I am meeting Sean Murphy, the creator of MURPHGUIDE.COM, an invaluable guide to bars in New York (you can find the link on this page).

    664) Heidelberg

    Between 85th and 86th Streets on 2nd at 1648 2nd Avenue is this classic German restaurant and beer. They have a good selection of draft German beers pulled from three white ceramic beer stations mounted on the old wooden bar with a brass rail. Dark wood bar chairs with black vinyl seats. Lots of glasses hang above the mirrors behind the bar. The cash register looks like a genuine antique. Two levels of shelves hold the liquor and there are red wood coolers with brown wood doors for the bottled beer. A larger set of shelves hold more liquor on one side of the coolers and shelves on the other side hold mugs ranging in size form pints to more than Bar Man could drink. No moose head (or elk head or caribou head, I have been getting a lot of email on just what kind of head was hanging on the wall at the Good World Bar & Grill) but there is a deer head. By the way, consensus of opinion is that it was a caribou head on the wall at Good World so I have updated my blog. Bar Man accepts constructive criticism (just not very well).

    A Deer Head, I Do Believe

    A trellis over the hanging glasses sports sun flowers and a model of a horse-drawn wagon loaded with wooden beer barrels. The wall opposite the bar has a partition with windows looking into the adjacent dining area. There are pictures of cocktails and one picture of a wine-bottle opener. There is a cozy little room in the back with a patterned banquette and tables with blue and white tablecloths. The ceiling in front is deep red and in the back it is more like a vine covered trellis. Beer steins ring the top of the walls in the back room. The room on the other side of the partitions has large pictures of landscapes and a shield and crossed swords hanging on the walls. There are little banquettes by the windows up front for sitting and having a drink while waiting for a table, or just to be cozy.

    A few guys in here were drinking beers with shots of Jagermeister They weren’t kids either. We got to talking about Jagermeister and the guy, Sidney Frank, who made a fortune off of it and then made another fortune when he sold Grey Goose to Bacardi for about two billion dollars. The guy is quite a character and if you get a chance you should read up on him. He lives in New Rochelle, not far from where my brother-in-law lives. In a much larger house though.

    I had a draft Spaten Munich lager.

    665) Jackson Hole

    It is a bit of a stretch to call this place at 1611 2nd Avenue between 83rd and 84th Streets a bar, and if it wasn’t for the reasonably decent selection of beer behind the bar/lunch counter and the beer station with four spigots mounted on top of it I may have just passed it by. But hey, there was also a bright yellow neon light right in front of me that said “BAR” so who was I to argue.

    It Really Is A Bar

    Otherwise the place was pure diner, from the black Formica topped counter to the booths lining the walls. They also had those things in the booths and on the “bar” where you could select tunes from the jukebox. Sam Cooke’s “You Send Me” and Patsy Cline’s “Crazy” just added to the ambience. I really wanted to order a hamburger and fries (no malt though, except what was in my beer) but there is a Mexican place down the street so I am going to wait to see if I can score some free chips with a margarita.

    There is a small outdoor seating area in front. Kind of cool in a retro way. Women’s beach volleyball was playing on the television so I got to watch tall, bikini clad women working up a sweat while I cooled down with a beer. Doesn’t get much better then that.

    I had a draft Boston Ale.

    666) Mustang Grill

    Welcome to the Upper East Side, 1633 2nd Avenue right on the corner of 85th Street, to be exact. Home of the $8.50 margaritas served in small brandy snifters. Aw well, the place seemed to be catering to a crowd that preferred the ping glop they were pumping out of the machines behind the bar. Kind of a shame because it looks like they have about a hundred different kinds of tequilas here. I did get my chips and salsa though, and the margarita was actually quite good.

    They have an interesting décor that would make this place worth a look-see. Pyramid shaped tin shaded lights that had punched out designs hung above the bar and these are draped with red jalapeno lights. A steer skull draped with Mardi Gras beads peered down at me from behind the bar. It sat above illuminated Lucite shelves in front of mirrors. Banquettes against the walls have vinyl backs with cowhide designs on the backs. Uber tacky, but somehow so right. Brick walls opposite the bar and mostly dusty rose, pale green, and yellowish orange paint everywhere else. Large mirrors, most ringed with more of those jalapeno lights, list the available tequilas (or at least some of them), margarita specials, and beers. There is a decent plasma television at each end of the bar and two more on the opposite wall. Not a bad place and the salsa was very good. The numerous “No Dancing” signs and the disco lights mounted on the ceiling leads me to believe that there is, indeed dancing.

    I had a margarita, up, with a salted rim.

    667) The Back Page

    At 1472 3rd Avenue at 83rd Street is this sports bar with seven televisions that I can see from my barstool and two more large screen televisions in the back. Nice long wooden bar with a brass rail and wooden chairs. Nothing fancy and the only disturbing thin was the large Texas Longhorn’s banner above a Yankees emblem. It could have been worse, I initially thought the Longhorns banner was one for the Chicago Bulls.

    Nothing too fancy about this place. Pretty much a functional, stop in, have some drinks, watch the games kind of place. Nothing wrong with that though. New York sports team pictures on the wall opposite the bar, but not over done. A large replica of the scoreboard showing the Yankees Leading Boston 5 to 4 at the bottom of the ninth with two outs dominates part of the wall opposite the bar.

    This was the October 2nd one game playoff on October 2nd, 1978 that the Yankees won and in which Bucky Dent hit his famous homer.

    I had a Tanqueray and tonic.

    668) Carlow East

    On the way back to the subway at 1254 Lexington Avenue between 84th and 85th Streets is what appears to be an old Irish pub that remodeled extensively hoping to attract a more upscale crowd but somehow failed. Maybe things change at night but at 3:00 P.M. it has a pretty grizzled crowd. If it wasn’t for my loud shirt and camera, Bar Man would have fit right in. There is an old wood bar that looks original and with a foot rest and bar chairs with green vinyl seats. A couple of brass beer stations with half a dozen spigots on each sit on top of the bar. Stained glass light shades with a dragon fly pattern hang above the bar. Little Chinese lanterns (did the Mysterious Chinese Lady get here before me and decorate) hang above the large mirrors behind the bar. A nice selection of liquors sit on glass shelves in front of two of the three mirrors and a tiered shelf in front of the center mirror. Metal ice chests behind the bar keep the bottled beer cold.

    Three decent plasma televisions in the back and one up front at one end of the bar. I would have enjoyed my stay a bit more if the guy next to me didn’t have this phlegmy cough. Luckily he had to step outside for a cigarette a few times so I did have some peace. The bartender was a very pleasant fellow.

    I had a Tanqueray and tonic.

    Sunday, July 17, 2005

    Jimmy's NY Best Irish Pub (mis)Guide(d)

    Ah, Jimmy, you let me down. And at the worst possible time. I was supposed to meet some people from out of town for a drink today. They had been following my blog and were visiting New York for a bit of a pub crawl of their own. I suggested Doc Watson's and, using Jimmy's Best New York Irish Pub Guide as my reference told them it was on 57th and 2nd Avenue. It is clearly marked on Jimmy's map. Unfortunately, it is actually on 77th and 2nd Avenue. What is worse, there aren't any bars in the vicinity of 57th and 2nd (unusual, I know). Even though Jimmy had the address right, for those of you not familiar with New York, street numbers tell you almost nothing about the actual location. Seems strange because in most cities the street numbers would correspond somewhat to the avenue. You know, something between 77th and 78th Streets would have an address like 7790, or something. Well, suffice it to say that is not how it works so I ended up walking the twenty blocks from 57th to 77th (with one quick stop on the way to quench my thirst) and got to Doc Watson's about an hour late. I don't know if the out-of-towners ever found it. Jimmy has been right every other time so I didn't even think about double checking. Bar Man has learned his lesson. And to those who were to have met me, I am truly sorry for the misinformation that I passed along to you.

    661) Beach Cafe

    This was my stop on the way up to Doc Watson's. Believe me, I needed a cold one because it was a long hike on a hot and humid day. I did make it all the way up to 70th Street before succumbing though. The Beach Cafe is on the Southeast corner of 2nd Avenue with the address of 1326 2nd Avenue. The decor is nothing like a beach cafe however. More like an upscale Irish pub, which it is. A woman at the bar with orange hair explained that it was an old Irish bar that has new owners and was remodeled to attract a more favorable clientele. This is happening more and more as I have noted in previous posts. Soon it will be difficult to find a real dive Irish bar, and what a shame that will be. I actually got into the conversation with the lady because she was sitting in front of the beer taps and I was trying to figure out what I wanted. She thought I was staring at her and when I told her I wasn't she seemed a bit disappointed and told me she had just had her hair done. Well, she was an elderly lady and we did end up in a fairly lengthy discussion about bars, her brother who used to call her at 6:00 A.M. when she lived in Paris and he was drunk in a bar in New York, all of the bars she knew (except for Doc Watson's, it turned out), and life in general. If I wasn't still trying to meet people I might have chatted longer.

    At any rate, this place has a nice old wood bar and a fairly fancy set-up behind the bar. Dark shelves and mirrors and cut glass decorations on the woodwork. There is also a decent sized refrigerated wine rack. Good selection of liquor on tiered shelves. Wrap-around windows and a white tablecloth kind of place. A gool-framed mirror and pictures on the wall opposite the bar. The bar chairs turned but I couldn't get them to spin around. How disappointing.

    I had a Sierra Nevada Pale Ale.

    662) Doc Watson's

    Found it at last, at 1490 2nd Avenue. How obvious, why wouldn't a place with an address of 1490 2nd Avenue be almost seven blocks away from a place with an address of 1326 2nd Avenue? What is really even more interesting is when they change the name of an Avenue to make it more upscale. Part of what used to be 4th Avenue is now Park Avenue South and if you think 200 Park Avenue South is anywhere close to 200 Park Avenue, think again, although it is an extension of Park Avenue. But enough about addresses in New York.

    As you might imagine, there is a lot of Sherlock Holmes memorabilia on the walls (Doc Watson being Sherlock Holmes sidekick and all) as well as lots of other stuff as well. Everything from a framed display of seaman's knots to an old street map of Manchester, England. It is, shall we say, a cluttered place. But cluttered in a comfortable way. A nice old bar and well used sidewalk seating. The back of the place looks out over, and down at, a little "garden" seating area that you get to by going downstairs and through French doors from a room with a pool table. And, as though to mock me for not knowing where Doc Watson's was I encountered this sign:

    Sure, make me feel even worse. Sheesh.

    Behind the bar was a set of really ornamental martini shaped glasses. They weren't really on display though, kind of down below the liquor. I doubt if they are ever used though. I was going to ask the bartender about them but she was really busy.

    I had a Tanqueray and tonic.

    663) Mo's Caribbean

    Down a block at 1454 2nd Avenue, on the corner of 76th Street, is this somewhat hard to miss place with an outdoor seating area around to the side. If you think it is colorful on the outside, you need to go in. Wildly decorated in bright orange, yellow, red and green with surfboards and shark warning signs this place really does look like a beach cafe. In fact the wall opposite the bar has fake windows above the tables that really do give the impression that you are looking out at a lovely Caribbean beach.

    It made me eager to get back to Mexico (but not to hit another 150 bars there). The semi-partition separating the bar from the tables had palm trees and overhead vines decorated with multi-colored Christmas lights. It really was quite a pleasant place. And behind the bar were three projection televisions that made you feel like you were having a drink at a drive-in. They should have had 1960's beach movies playing instead of sports, that would have been perfect.

    They had some interesting drink specials too, including a 50 ounce margarita suitable for three or four people.

    I bet this place really jumps at night. They also have Mexican food and I did have one of their bar special beef tacos for a buck. It was very good and if I didn't know I would have dinner waiting for me later I could easily have eaten several more than the one I had.

    I had a margarita, not too bad either, and headed on home.

    Well, one good thing about today (other than the bars I hit) was that I found a new area with many more bars to explore. Up a bit higher than my usual roaming range I am looking forward to going back again. I did hit three bars though bringing my total up to 663 for the year and leaving 337 to go. I expect next week to be a bit slow though, family things, luncheon engagements, and another trip to Callicoon. I shall try not to disappoint though.