By Kendria Smith
Park Avenue Tavern in Midtown served up a whole lot more than “the usual” recently. Custom suit tailoring, cigar wrapping, scotch tasting and a side of shoe shining were the specials featured on the menu during “Suit Up,” the first in a series of forthcoming lifestyle events. Men and women alike enjoyed Radeberger Pilsner in the dimly lit Barrel Room, where wood paneling and exposed brick abound and beer taps are built right into the swanky leather booths.
As the first in this series, the affair was tailored to the distinguished taste of the bar’s clientele – many of whom frequent Park Avenue Tavern after work to savor upscale eats and a stiff drink or two in a business casual setting with a comfy neighborhood vibe.
“Hosting an event like this is a great way to give back to our clients who come in 4 to 5 nights a week,” explained owner Eugene Brennan. “If you can come to Park Avenue Tavern to enjoy your cocktail or a Pilsner and get pampered, why not?”
Teaming up with Crown Tailors of Bangkok, the Tavern upped the hospitality ante by providing patrons with an evening of custom-tailored suit fittings. Swatches in an array of colors, patterns and fabrics were on display as expert tailors took measurements and seamlessly guided each customer through the process of picking suit elements that reflected their personal style.
If clothes make the man, leave it to a good ol’ glass of scotch to add a dash of “swagger” to complete the dapper look.
David Tabachnik, a representative from Jim Beam Brands Co., described the average scotch drinker as an affluent and well-educated male, age thirty-five and older. Men who appreciate scotch are basically the Don Drapers of the world, whom all “mini-Mad Men” aspire to become.
Mr. Tabachnik was on hand with three bottles of Laphroaig Islay Single Malt Scotch Whisky to educate guests on the fine art of scotch tasting. Each scotch varied in age, which spoke to their distinct levels of flavor. The youngest of the group, a ten year-old scotch, had a robust smoky or “peaty” finish, while the eighteen year-old was also full-bodied, with a smooth finish that was slightly sweeter with floral notes. The quarter cask, aged in two different-sized used bourbon barrels, was the perfect balance of both, with a smoky but not overly sweet or earthy finish, making it a great single malt scotch whisky to help the novice drinker assimilate.
And, what event would be complete without a fine parting gift? Before making my exit, I stopped by a booth offering a lesson in cigar rolling, courtesy of La Casa Grande Cigars. The boutique, located in the famous Arthur Avenue retail market in the Bronx, is known for its premium cigar selection and elite clientele, including the likes of President George W. Bush and Governor Pataki.
Cigars have always been appreciated by the older male demographic, but are now finding their place among the female and younger set, who perceive cigars as a novelty to incorporate into social events such as weddings, birthday parties, and fundraisers. And like a well-cut suit or aged bottled of scotch, a freshly rolled cigar makes a great accessory that will leave a lasting impression.
In a city on the go where time is as valuable a resource as money, you can’t beat a one-stop shop that caters to your taste in lifestyle as well as your stomach. And with a growing list of top name brands gearing up to gratify patrons with a host of high-end products and amenities, you’re bound to find Park Avenue Tavern a place well-suited to serve you.
For more information on future events, visit:
Park Avenue Tavern
99 Park Avenue