By Anne Jones
In honor of St. Paddy’s Day, I’d like to pay homage to McSorley’s Old Ale House. Some claim it’s a tourist trap, but then there are others who’ve made it their beloved NYC Irish bar. My peeps and I stumbled upon this East Village hub a few years ago…and now, we just manage to stumble out. (Oh, what fun, fond memories…actually, I can’t remember what they were)…
The bar claims to be the oldest in all of Manhattan and boasts that Abe Lincoln himself once sat his famous derriere there and sipped brewskis in the days of yore. For all of us girly-girls out there, don’t even think about ordering a Cosmo; this is a man’s-man place.
McSorley’s libations are mainly light and dark beer (if you do a blind taste test, you won’t know the difference) served up two at a time. Think that’s enough testosterone? Check this out: the place didn’t even allow women to enter until the 1970′s. Not to worry now, plenty of ladies frequent the bar, along with slurring locals, biker-boys, frat boys, Armani suits, and tourists. So, if you want to meet these types, enter at your own risk!
Just so you know, the daylight hours are the best time to score a table. Plus, this bar is a really fun day-drink. If you’re lucky enough to score a table, then you’ll surely be sharing it with a slew of strangers who’ll be your best friends by day’s end.
From what I hear, McSorley’s serves some pretty good grub, but to be honest, the only menu item that I’ve tried is the cheese, onion, and cracker platter. It comes in small or large and is anything but fancy. Sharp white cheese and Always Save crackers, served with sliced raw onions, which are meant to be slathered with the somewhat crusty-looking spicy mustard that sits on the table. I think it tastes especially delicious after many-o-beer and is a nice coating-the-belly munchie.
So, what are ya waiting for, lads? Check out this historic ale house of Celtic pride! If you plan on going on St. Paddy’s Day, set your alarm. A thirsty crowd lines up around 6AM.