LocalBozo.com correspondent Link Cromwell vowed to have a drink at every bar in Hoboken before running the 2011 New York City Marathon. With every bar visit in the “Sixth Borough” now completed along with a successful race now finished, it’s time to reel our reporting back toward the City. And as such, every single Friday we’ll be taking over where Link left off, showing you distinctive bars in each borough perhaps for the very first time, perhaps to refresh your memory of a fun place you’ve ducked into, or perhaps to suggest a new spot for you to check out. You can follow our travels as we approach each weekend on Friday mornings with LocalBozo.com’s “Drink Here Now.”
520 8th Avenue, Midtown, Manhattan
Getting There: 1,2,3,A, C, E to 34th Street – Penn Station
Drink Here Now: Houndstooth Pub
So you say you’re in Midtown Manhattan and can’t find a spot to drink with your buddies. Well we are here to help. This neighborhood has long been seen as a bit of a dead zone loaded with dive bars that are more creepy than cool and chain restaurants that cater to the tourist set. So if you don’t fit into the latter categories, fear not. The “Drink Here Now” crew is here to help you slug through the bad bars and point you in the direction of a very capable Midtown watering hole. It’s “Houndstooth Pub,” an 8th Avenue corner joint ready to serve you a beer or some shots with no B.S.
Houndstooth is perfect for a Madison Square Garden sports or concert pre-game imbibing. And that is exactly the day in which we arrived. The New York Rangers were in town and the pub was packed with fans. The bar is rectangular in shape providing a wealth of seating. Being a fully functioning pub, several tables line the bar for food service. On this occasion we wanted to grab a few brews before moving on into the night.
As soon as we sat down one of the two bartenders on duty approached us for orders. We opted for bottles of Miller Lite and winter seasonal craft pints. On average beers were seven dollars a piece. When you’re in Midtown slightly steeper prices are the norm, so that’s just something to get over before you even head inside. A few brews later whiskey shots were had considering that Houndstooth has a fine selection of top shelf booze. So if you don’t care about the cost, we suggest shooting the aged Jameson. It was well worth it.
The music at Houndstooth was a combination of current Top 40 Hits and pub standards like U2 and The Killers. So while you’re getting sauced you’ll at least have one song to badly sing along to. In the end, a bar like this serves its purpose to entertain you before a game at MSG or while waiting for the train. They accomplish all of this while at the same time not ripping you off.
Bar Type – A Midtown bar perfect for a few drinks before a game at Madison Square Garden or while waiting for your train.
When to Visit – Houndstooth serves the purpose of providing you a place to drink at when you have some time to kill before going elsewhere. And there’s seriously nothing wrong with that. The traditional looking pub has tons of space at either the bar or surrounding tables to simply relax and drink. Basically, feel free to go anytime.
Value – If you’re in Midtown you’re going to pay for beers and mixed drinks at a slightly higher premium. The area is heavily touristy with a strong afterwork crowd. So, three dollar beers really isn’t going to happen.
The Lowdown – Houndstooth is a welcome change to a neighborhood filled with burnt out dives that are more creepy than fun and chain restaurants. Pony up to the bar, grab a beer and share some laughs as you wait for tip off or the puck to drop!
- Alex Corrine