From our last update in mid-December, not too much has changed. Most places remain closed and we gather that Nelson Blue will be moving to Midtown. We will close this post on a happy note: Fresh Salt has re-opened. Passing by there on a recent weeknight, we saw lights on, the sidewalk sandwich board out front and patrons inside. Slowly, the bars and the other small businesses in the neighborhood are returning. We can all take some joy in that.
Located at 206 West 41st street, Bar Catalonia takes over in the spot formerly known as Bar 41. Much more laid back than its predecessor, Bar Catalonia is the hostel bar for the Equity Point Hostel, just as Bar 41 was the hotel bar for Hotel 41. Long, somewhat narrow space with a small bar, much of the place is taken up by low lying seating and cartoon and caricature art along the wall opposite the bar. There are eight tap beers and a limited hard liquor and wine selection. We had a happy hour Bronx Brewery Pale Ale for just $5. Very good happy hour price for this part of town. Overall, it’s worth a visit if you’re in the nabe.
Basically a redux of Bill’s Gay Nineties, which in early 2012. Bill’s Food & Drink, located at 57 East 54th Street in Midtown Manhattan, picks up where its predecessor left off. We were not regulars at the original Bill’s, but not much looks different. Honestly, if we had not known that the original had closed in early 2012 and walked in today, we would not have known there was a discontinuity in service and change in ownership. The only thing that changed in appearance is the name (and that only slightly). After speaking with the bartender, we learned that the food menu became more upscale. Still, a good spot for lunch or an afterwork drink.
Located at 153 Essex Street, Two Bit’s Retro Arcade brings Barcade-like fun to Manhattan. Unfortunately, Two Bit’s falls a bit short of Barcade bliss. Two Bit’s space is long and somewhat narrow. Arcade games line both sides of the space until the back half of the room, where the bar is on the right and a few tables at the rear. Nearly a dozen tap beers, as well as some wines and sake. Bar snacks also available. Two Bit’s gets crowded fairly quickly, so, if you want the run of the place, it’s probably a good idea to visit during the afternoon or early evening.
Wishing you a safe and prosperous 2013. Our New Year’s Resolution: More NYC pub crawls in 2013!
Best wishes for 2014. Our New Year’s Resolution: More NYC bar crawls this year!