The Top Alcoholic & Creative St. Patrick’s Day Desserts

Whether you’re heading to a St. Patrick’s Day potluck or intending to fawn tipsily over a plate of sweetness at the end of your pub crawl, the mission is clear: you need something sweet and St. Patrick’s-themed. Thankfully, some of NYC’s best dessert spots are offering special treats that lovingly combine not just the green theme, but also alcohol. And here they are:

The Beer Cream Puff at Puddin‘: Soda bread-inspired puff with an orange glaze, cherry compote, and filled with pudding soaked in Brooklyn Brewery’s Dry Irish Stout. Info here

The Black & Tan cupcake at Sweet Revenge: Chocolate cake infused with Young’s Double Chocolate Stout, topped with ChocoVine-laden cream cheese frosting. Info here.

The Banana Bread Pudding at Bounce Sporting Club: Topped with butternut squash ice cream and paired with three homemade Jameson shots: banana, eggnog, coquito. Get it Sunday at their Sunday Funday party, info here.

The Irish Chocolate cupcake at Sprinkles: Belgian dark chocolate cake topped with Bailey’s Irish cream cheese frosting. Info here.

The Leprechaun Milkshake at Melt Shop: Green vanilla milkshake topped with four-leaf clover sprinkles. Info here.

The Guinness Chocolate Cupcake at The Windsor: Guinness-infused chocolate cake with Bailey’s buttercream, served in a jar. Info here.

Discover the latest parties & openings with the weekly BlackBook Happenings email, & follow Bonnie on Twitter here

 

Photo: UrbanDaddy

Your St. Patrick’s Day NYC Itinerary

This year, St. Patrick’s Day arrives on a Sunday, transforming our day of rest into a day of revelry, as NYers hit the streets covered in shamrock-colored face paint and stuffed with Jameson and Guinness. And New York really makes it all too easy, as bars across Manhattan host massive parties devoted to getting you as buzzed and green-in-the-face as possible. Since navigating the subway system may overwhelm the day’s thought processes, I’ve gathered the city’s best parties into a neat, walk-able, almost-charming itinerary. So print it out, stick it on your fridge, carry it in your pocket, and fuel up for a day of nonstop mischief.

First stop: sideBAR for an all-green breakfast.
Our favorite Seuss book comes to life at upscale sportsbar sideBAR, where green eggs, pancakes, bagels, and Lucky Charms are the requisite, pre-drinking morning fuel. Alas, the breakfast is called “Kegs & Eggs,” which means this event gets dynamic quick, offering up to eight green Bud Light drafts, and getting you buzzed by noon. Starts 9am, $24. Info here.

Second stop: Bounce Sporting Club for their themed Sunday Funday party.
Green sparklers & bottle service, rotating DJs,  and an all Jameson whiskey-infused menu kick off your official St. Patrick’s celebration with class and crazy at Bounce’s weekly “Sunday Funday” party. Pick up the banana Jameson shots, Just the Tip cocktail with peach puree, and – if you already need some reviving – the Slumpbuster cocktail with Jameson, Bailey’s, Kaluha, and restorative espresso. Starts noon. Info here.

Third Stop: The Windsor for pastrami spring rolls, corned beef, & Guinness cupcakes.
Snack time. Head to the West Village or Gansevoort Park locations of upscale sportsbar The Windsor for their special pastrami spring rolls, corned beef, and Guinness chocolate cupcake with Bailey’s buttercream, served in a jar. All day till 4am. Info here.

Fourth Stop: Fiddlesticks for the casual, pub experience.
Ireland’s best NY bar, this pub holds all the Irish charm you envision for the big day: outdoor tables, a packed bar full of loud Irishmen, Gelic lettering and décor, filthy bathrooms. Fiddlesticks is king. Till 2am. Info here.

Fifth Stop: Lavo for a wild dance party.
You’ll need a cab to this Midtown East club, but it’s worth it: do the Irish jig with sexy dancers on top of your table – Lavo style – at the themed Riviera Sundays weekly party. DJ Yacine spins, while your world starts to also.

Sixth Stop: Your bed.
Well done. Now go to sleep – or get lucky. It’s the Irish way.

Follow Bonnie on Twitter here

New York’s Wackiest St. Patrick’s Day Dishes & Drinks

Like all holidays, St. Patrick’s Day is a day when we get away with doing things that are deemed unacceptable on ordinary days. Running around in green onesies, handing out Lucky Charms cereal to strangers, and drunkenly yelling the phrase “Luck of the Irish!” to couples mid-makeout is strongly encouraged and instantly Instagrammed. And when it comes to fuel for the ride, the wackiness continues, as food and alcohol finds any excuse to intermingle. Tuna with Jameson soy sauce? Yeah, why not. Bread pudding stuffed with banana Jameson shots? Can’t say no. Here are NYC’s most unusual:

GO Burger: 

  • St. Patty Melt Burger: a 4 oz. burger topped with corned beef, Irish cheddar, mustard, and sauerkraut, available now.
  • Kiss Me I’m Irish Spiked Shake: a creamy shake full of Bailey’s, Jameson, & Murphy’s Stout, blended with a shamrock cookie and whipped cream, available now.

Bounce Sporting Club:

  • Tuna with Jameson Soy Sauce: savory, alcoholic, Sunday only.
  • Banana Bread Pudding with Jameson shots: paired with butternut squash ice cream and eggnog & banana shots, Sunday only.

BLT Steak: 

  • The Jameson Goodbye Cocktail: drink infused with Jameson, green tea, lime juice, & mint tea, $18, available this weekend.

The Windsor:

  • Pastrami Spring Rolls: meat, fried, wrapped, perfect, this weekend.
  • Guinness Chocolate Cupcake with Bailey’s Buttercream: as described, served in a jar, available this weekend. 

Discover the latest parties & openings with the weekly BlackBook Happenings email, & follow Bonnie on Twitter here

Photo: damnthatlooksgood.com

Do You Suffer From MGOOMFA This Oscar Season?

Does watching The Oscars in your living room sound a bit dull? Do you crave that surge of communal disappointment and celebration upon the announcement of the winners? Do you like chicken tenders? If you’ve said yes to any of these questions, chances are you have a case of the MGOOMFA: Must Get Out Of My F@#$ing Apartment syndrome commonly associated with freezing climates and 4+ hours browsing Hulu daily. And with The Oscars coming up this Sunday, the perfect opportunity is upon you to get out of your apartment, and communicate with fellow NYers at official Oscars viewing parties across the city. Here is where to go:

SideBAR: Upscale sportsbar. Optional two-hour Bud Light & well-cocktail open bar at 7pm. Oscars ballot competition with $50 gift certificate for the winner. Personal bucket of pigs-in-a-blanket and tater tots. $10 entry, $50 with open bar. Chicken tenders.

The Windsor: High-end sportsbar.Free house-made gourmet popcorn. Free first glass of bubbly. Truffle grilled cheese. Starts 5pm. No entry fee. No chicken tenders.

The Bell House: Brooklyn’s wackiest events venue. Hosted by (my favorite) comedian & (erotic short story) writer Dave Hill. Raunchy, thought-provoking  analysis during commercials. $8 cocktail specials. No food/chicken tenders.

Brooklyn Winery: The sophisticated celebration. Oscar-themed sparkling cocktails. Seth MacFarlane hosts. Oscar ballots. First come, first-served seating. Starts 7pm. Get gussied up. Obviously no chicken tenders.

Be the first to hear about the latest NYC parties and events by signing up for the weekly NYC BlackBook Happenings email newsletter.

Follow Bonnie on Twitter here

The Upscale Sportsbar: The Royal, Murray Bar, Sanctuary Ultra Lounge

American stadiums have gone from worn bleachers to luxury boxes. New York sports spots are on a similar game plan. Sticky floors and burnt nachos are giving way to leather banquettes and full-on cocktail programs. The sports bar has evolved into the sports lounge. Joints like The Ainsworth and The Windsor led the way, but The Royal, Murray Bar, and the upcoming Sanctuary Ultra Lounge (pictured) are hot on their heels.

Union Square’s The Royal takes a more regal approach than the sweatpants-fest of New York sports bars of yore. There are nightclub shades in the look, with smooth banquettes and modern lighting. Slabs of rustic wood nod to The Ainsworth and add some character. Sightlines are excellent, even at peak hours, thanks to state-of-the-art TVs posted up high. You’ll find elevation in the kitchen, too, from a Minetta Tavern hand. Grilled cheese upscales with mozzarella and brie wrapped in prosciutto. John Legend and Kris Humphries were among early guests. Many more boldfaced names will follow.

Murray Bar is a cheeky take on the sports lounge, put together by The Cash Bar peeps upstairs. The walls are brick and leather and the ceiling is pressed tin. Mason jars are deployed for a kitschy cocktail program. Yes, they’ve found a way to mix Gatorade and intoxicants. Joe DiMaggio is honored with vodka, Jägermeister, lemon-lime Gatorade, and Red Bull in the Joltin’ Joe. Other New York stars get more dubious recognition. L.T., Roger Clemens, and Darryl Strawberry are among the mug shots hanging in the hall of shame. In back there’s an Astroturf “Field of Dreams” for private parties. If you build it, they will come.

Covering the intimate end of the sports club spectrum is Sanctuary Ultra Lounge, coming soon from the HAVEN crew. The space fills a sleek nook behind the lobby of the Sanctuary Hotel. Leather, walnut, and Terrazzo provide accents, with the bar aglow in butter-yellow onyx. The kitchen does refined takes on comfort food. Sliders use Wagyu beef, while mac ‘n’ cheese upgrades with truffles. A smart cocktail list features drinks like the Smooth Criminal, with Johnny Walker Black, Domaine de Canton, lemon, and grenadine. High-def TVs discreetly morph into mirrors when the final whistle blows. An additional huge screen rolls down on the side. You’ve never really seen Colin Kaepernick kiss his biceps until you’ve seen it in 110” projection. Opening night will be Super Bowl Sunday, with a tailgate on the roof and Russian Standard models (and vodka) in the lounge. Best to make a reservation, because Ainsworth Park it ain’t.

Industry Insiders: David Marino, Sophisticated Sportsman

When David Marino and business partners Chris Jonns, Ben Grieff, and Sean Largotta realized that New York’s West Village lacked the kind of place they liked to hang out, they opened their own: The Windsor, an upscale sports bar that focuses on sophisticated new American cuisine and high-end cocktails. It’s a fitting endeavor for the native New Yorker who has hospitality in his blood. Growing up on the Upper East Side, he was constantly throwing parties and organizing events for his friends. But it was a conversation with Grieff and colleagues that made it all come together. "Ben and I wanted to open up a neighborhood bar in the West Village where all of our friends can hang out," he explains. "Sports is a big part of our lives but we didn’t want to make your regular sports bar."

The point of differentiation between the Windsor and the many beer-and-wings sports bars in New York is the quality of its food, beverage, and service. 

"We wanted to create an elevated experience for our guests, from our cocktail program to our cuisine," Marino says. "We wanted a very upscale, high-end component, which we saw was lacking, especially in the West Village."

The point is to make it welcoming to everyone, not just the lager louts so focused on the game that the food and drink is a secondary concern. 

"The neighborhood has really embraced us. We have regulars coming in four of five nights a week – including a ton of British expatriats – and a staff that’s been in place well over a year now," he says. "And girls love it, and I think that has to do with the quality of the food and the cocktails."

What kinds of cocktails are those, a gentleman might wonder?

"The Half-Windsor is very popular: Hendrick’s Gin, Japanese yuzu limes, fresh cucumber juice, and a rosewater spritz," he says. "It’s fantastic and everybody loves it."

Although keeping The Windsor successful requires plenty of effort, work and play overlap in the life of the entrepreneur, especially when a big game is on. 

"A perfect night for me at the bar is a Sunday Jets game, and I’m drinking a Brooklyn IPA," Marino says. "And the Jets are winning, hopefully." 

A Spirited Selection of Upscale New York Sports Bars to Watch (the Giants Win) the Super Bowl

On Sunday, the most important sporting event in the world will be held, assuming by "world" you mean "United States." This year’s Super Bowl is particularly significant, as it pits the Giants of East Rutherford, New Jersey New York against the Patriots of Foxborough, Massachusetts New England, two of the biggest television advertising markets most historically rich cities in the country. A list of Boston sports bars can be found here. As for my fair city, New York is filled with sports bars, but there are a handful of particularly upscale joints that break the lager-and-wings mold with fancy cocktails and haute cuisine – particularly important if you’re trying to make a date of it. Here are a few of our favorites. 

Bounce Sporting Club – Downtown

This upscale sports lounge attracts fans from far and wide with artisinal cocktails, delicious food, and more TVs than you can shake a thunderstick at.  In honor of the home team, order a Blueberi Bounce cocktail, which is made with Stoli Blueberi vodka, fresh lemon, smashed blueberries, and ginger ale.

Bounce Sporting Club – Uptown

The original location of Bounce strikes the perfect balance between clubhouse and fancy restaurant. If you wanted to watch the game and your better half was counting on date night, this is your spot. 

Snap

The sports bar reimagined as a nightclub. Clubby feel, football-leather banquettes, and sophisticated sips abound. 

The Ainsworth

This posh Chelsea sports bar has 40 flat screen TVs, along with miso duck spring rolls and 100-ounce beer tubes.

Warren 77

Sean Avery and Beatrice bloodlines make this about as trendy as sports bars get. Plenty of fun even if the Giants lose, not that there’s any chance of that happening. 

The Windsor

British-accented sports pub has Guinness-battered fish and chips and porn star martinis. Also, sports. 

The Fulton

Sophisticated sports bar way downtown goes the gastropub route with a killer menu and craft beers from here to eternity. 

Firefly

Proving that fancy sports bar is not an oxymoron. Big screens and quality burgers will make you cheer. 

40/40

Party like a rap star while watching sports stars at Jay-Z’s super club. 

Village Pourhouse

This East Village sports mecca gets rowdy, but that’s to be expected when you’ve got 50 bottles and 24 draft beers going at any given time. A nice, comfy hang. 

[Photo: q1077.com]

New York: Top 11 Places to Pick Up a Summer Analyst

Wall Street interns. Every summer they swarm the city, claiming everything from Tribeca sublets to Upper East Side dive bars as their own. But no matter how hard hipsters roll their eyes, there’s absolutely nothing we can do till Duke summons them back for pre-season. But it’s not all bad: no one has more fervent support for the monogramming industry, and in a few years it might be nice to visit their private islands, or at least their downtown lofts with outside space. So follow the smell of Axe to these spots to find a Bud Fox of your very own.

Dorrians Red Hand (Upper East Side) – Burger joint by day, fratastic by night.

Automatic Slim’s (West Village) – Freaky people dancing to a mélange of Blondie, blues, and rock ‘n’ roll.

Brass Monkey (Meatpacking District) – Irish hospitality amid MePa monkeyshines.

Brother Jimmy’s (Union Square) Citywide chain delivering weathered wood and BBQ. “Put some south in yo’ mouth.”

Brinkley’s (Nolita) – Gastropub heir to Bar Martignetti is more Christie than David.

Butter (Noho) – Celeb hang has surprising longevity of Monday night party. High-test hotties and much meticulously tousled hair.

230 Fifth (Union Square) – Hang in a garden chair on the roof deck with your favorite teeth-grinding I-banker. Viva the ’80s, baby!

Turtle Bay (Midtown East) – Relive your college years in Midtown; keg stands not included.

Joshua Tree (Murray Hill) – Young Murrays reminiscing about the MTV they watched in their short-pants days.

The Windsor (West Village) – Gastropub ambitions at this posh, Brit-accented sports bar.

Beauty & Essex (Lower East Side) – More beauty than Essex, as former furniture shop draws a flock of pretty people.

Industry Insiders: Chris Jonns, Raising the Bar

New York has plenty of spots where you can bend an elbow and watch the game, but none of them had that certain quality Chris Jonns remembered from the pubs in his native London. Instead of complaining, he did something about it, opening the Windsor, a high-end sports pub in the West Village, with partners David Marino and Ben Grieff.

“It’s a place where everybody knows each other, everybody’s friendly, and the waitresses are brilliant,” he says. “I was so fed up with the crowded bar scene, always getting lager spilled on me.” The Windsor brings together the best of the UK and America: perfect pints, soccer on the telly, rock ‘n’ roll on the stereo, and creative cocktails like the Sloney Pony, which is made with huckleberry-infused vodka. “I didn’t want to do a completely English pub – that would be kind of cheesy – so it’s a hybrid of American and English culture,” he says. “It’s ambidextrous.”