Time Out New
"While you need not be a hard-core Yankees fan to hit this narrow,
wood-paneled sports dive, you'd better pretend to be one if you hope to
commandeer one of two gas grills stationed on the back deck. (At the very
least, refrain from announcing you're a lifelong Red Sox obsessive.)
Reserve it ahead of time by ringing up the bartenders, who pour potent,
sports-themed martinis on Wednesday nights, like the tart A-Raz ($8), made
with Stoli Razberi vodka and blue raspberry and cranberry juices. Or maybe
just go for a beer."
"Tradition trumps trends at Reif's Tavern. Drink beer, play pool, throw darts, or if
you call ahead, you can BYOM—Bring Your Own Meat—for the outdoor grill on
the backyard patio. The tight-knit regulars welcome a new face but it
might be wise to keep your Red Sox shout-outs to yourself at this sports
"Now this bar, at 302 East 92nd Street between 1st and 2nd Avenues,
is the real deal, opening in 1942 and looking as though it hasn't
changed much since. There was an old wooden bar with a foot rest. The
chairs looked fairly new, dark wood with black vinyl seats and somewhat
fancy backs. The back bar is fairly simple, several large plain mirrors
with tiered shelves above old wooden coolers and drawers and metal ice
chests holding bottled beer and vodka. A couple of chalkboards had beers
and beer specials written on them. Dusty rose walls above the mirrors.
The brick wall opposite the bar had narrow mirrors above a narrow ledge
with stools in front. Pictures of old baseball players and customers
hung on the wall above the mirrors. There is a decent sized back room
that had a nice pool table and a Black Buck Hunter game.
A couple of old regulars were in there talking about their health, the
heat, and the cost of funerals. Somehow this led to a discussion of
Ocean's 11, Monty Python, Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis, Elvis imitators
(they knew one) and Frank Sinatra. One of those conversations you
generally only get into over a drink or two. I enjoyed myself."
"Although you could walk past this place a million times without
knowing it exists, this cash only establishment has been at the same
location for over 60 years. Equipped with a back patio for grilling your
own food, as well as seven televisions connected to four satellites,
this place is a haven for a neighborhood crowd that doesn't mind
watching a Yankee game with an NYC cop or firefighter. With five beers
on draft and no happy hour specials, the family atmosphere at Reif's
Tavern is a nice change from anyone sick of wading through layers of
bridge and tunnelers just to get a drink."
"Reif's is a solid neighborhood dive where the life stories of
the locals pour as freely as the shots. Pass by once and
there's a good chance you'll become a regular. It's the sort of
place where talking shit is not only expected, it's encouraged. There
are two grills on the back patio where you are welcome to cook your own
food. Against all odds, the twentysomethings
have discovered this gem and hang around the back room playing pool and
darts on the weekends."
||On your way to Reif's,
make sure you pick up a
from Claudio next door at
their website for a menu.
92nd Street, btw 1st&2nd Ave.
New York, NY 10128
open noon - 4am, 7 days a week