Friday, July 11, 2008

Bar Spotlight - Kettle Of Fish (59 Christopher St.)

Kettle of Fish. I figure I'd start this little series of bar reviews and yes, it'll be similar to my Yelp reviews but maybe not. Anywho, Rob and Warren and the crew here are just real naturals when it comes to bartending. They are quick, friendly when it warrants friendliness, and just a great group of guys. They enjoy rattling each other, you can totally see that they are having as much fun being the gatekeepers of those bottles of Magners as you are being the patron.

The bar is sectioned off into two parts basically: you pass Duplex and you walk down the steps into the bar section which stretches out on your right, and on the left you have your jukebox with classic rock and soul standards, the bathrooms, and the coat rack. As you round the corner there's some seating, an arcade game, and a pinball machine.

The second room is really where you can settle into an all nighter, although this is hardly the bar to stay all night, the ebbs and flows of people don't warrant that necessarily. There's a section with 3 couches facing each other around a non-working fireplace, great for a large group, and I've had many a nights sitting and chatting up a storm about this or that. The lone tv looms above a octagonal table, and then as you work toward the dart boards (where they have actual games) there's a few tables with chairs.

The crowds here can get fairly packed on weekends, no doubt, mostly at the bar but sometimes around the corner too. There's a few regulars who are always lined up, usually much older, but a lot of the usual people that come here seem to be mid to late twenties, and early thirties. It's not really stiff enough to be for the more corporate types and yet it's not divey or unclean for the real rowdy types. That's why it's usually a great mix of people, a bit preppy but it's always a healthy volume of conversation. The modest prices aren't a turn off either, last I checked it was hovering around 4.25 for a bottle of Bud Light.

It's one of those well lit bars, which is what I really enjoy about it. There are a handful of bars that enjoy being well lit and know that it does create a warm atmosphere because of it, it's very inviting. Wisconsin memorabilia lounges around and it really achieves a real down-to-earth quality. It's one of the few bars as well where I've seen a really nice older lady at the door checking IDs and controlling the door. And as I stated, the staff here really know each other quite well, and that energy is totally on display and isn't necessarily unique but combined with the other charms of the place, it makes it possibly my favorite bar to go to in the West Village. You can't really find a better bar like this in the area: it's cozy and the beer flows freely and served by a great group of people.

For more, go to:
Kettle of Fish website
(212) 414-2278

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