years ago I lived amongst the 7.3 million people that inhabited
Manhattan Island at the time. Today I live in a small river town with a
total population of 1,491. Quite frankly, nothing much about my life
has changed other than the fact that I no longer spend two hours a day
underground commuting to and from work. Why the town fathers of
Frenchtown, New Jersey refuse to recognize the value of subterranean
transportation is beyond me.
During my stay on the Upper East Side I tended bar downtown in Chelsea
at Peter McManus’. I was considered an outsider, not because I recently
came in from Jersey, but because I lived north of 29th Street. Most of
my coworkers seldom left the neighborhood. One went so far as to turn
down a dinner invitation claiming that a journey to the Upper East Side
would be disorienting and quite possibly life threatening. It was
during my tenure at this New York City institution that I came to
realize that cities are nothing more than a collection of small towns
huddled together on a piece ground with a common political border,
subject to the same charms and provincial attitudes that distinguish
any American community.
In this issue we offer for your consideration five classic taverns,
that although their appeal is universal, each one is truly defined by
the smaller communities that they serve. Unfortunately because this
island needs to grow skyward many similar landmarks have already tasted
the wrecking ball. So in the spirit of urban pub preservation we
decided to dedicate this issue to New York’s neighborhood taverns.
|Next month the
crew heads west to Jim Thorpe, Pennsylvania to share the
best kept secret in America. This town throws the most superb St.
Patrick’s Day party on the continent! And best of all, this year the
party is on March 9th, so there is plenty of time to get back to
Boston, New York or Dublin by the 17th.