The rear of Tribeca Tap House's bar looks like it's survived since colonial times, with thick planks of aged wood sunk into the brick wall. The bar itself stands in contrast, sporting a clean, modern design that includes tap handles mounted on polished metal. It's a fitting image for a restaurant that sticks to the basics of a neighborhood watering hole—namely cold drafts and hot food—and then elevates them with a heavy selection of craft beers and New American gastropub dishes.
The all-day menu tempts patrons with specialties such as crispy shrimp ‘n’ chips and the Tap House burger, a ground-in-house blend of sirloin, chuck, and brisket. The chefs' sandwiching skills continue to shine in more complex assemblages as well, such as the short-rib grilled cheese, which enfolds wild mushrooms, caramelized onions, and chipotle gouda on texas toast. And no pub meal is complete without a fried appetizer, of which Tribeca Tap House has many, including cornmeal-crusted pickle chips—frickles—accompanied by ranch sauce. Bartenders pour more than 20 draft beers at any time, keeping guests cool and calm as they watch sports games on one of many flat-screen televisions. The surrounding decor is heavy on rustic wood and brick, although works from local artists interject the handsome earth tones with pops of color.
It should come as no surprise that the bartenders at Manhattan Proper know how to make a proper manhattan. They start with Basil Hayden’s small-batch bourbon and an exact blend of sweet and dry vermouth. After mixing in a dash of bitters, they add the finishing touch: a bourbon-soaked cherry. The care with which this drink is crafted finds its reflection in the bar’s impeccably designed interior, where lofted ceilings and minimalist, industrial-chic decor create a space that can accommodate huge crowds without feeling too packed. The extra elbow room is fortunate, since guests arrive in droves on the weekends to feast on burgers, catch live sports games on the bar’s flat-screen televisions, and obsessively count the buttons on the dining room’s tufted leather sofas.
The dining room, lounge, and bar areas at 121 Fulton Street take their cue from the past, with leather-lined banquettes and crystal chandeliers that create a sophisticated setting to enjoy eclectic American pub fare. Plates of black Angus or pulled pork sliders decorate the sleek black tables for a post-work bite, and banana French toast and eggs benedict share space with breakfast cocktails during weekend brunches. Oversized lanterns light the bar area featuring flat-screen televisions and three-dimensional bartenders who mix specialty cocktails with fresh raspberries, cucumbers, and pur?ed lychee and pour pints of domestic and imported beers. Mirrors abound throughout the restaurant to make the space feel open while also concealing plasma televisions that spark to life during baseball games, soccer matches, or tests of the Emergency Broadcast System.
A barrow boy pushes his cart past horse-drawn carriages, police on horseback, and a lady on a stroll, parasol in hand. This historical scene, appropriately tinted in sepia, hangs above diners at Pound & Pence, where it's one of two 10-foot murals that depict lively streets and pubs in 19th-century England.
Although Pound & Pence's proprietors can't re-create the days of Dickens on all New York's streets, they do conjure an old-time vibe inside their establishment.
Dark woodwork, chairs and benches with floral upholstery, and historic English memorabilia contribute to the space's refined, yet lived-in vibe. A grand staircase in the center of the space leads visitors to a level that feels more like a parlor than a pub, complete with leather wingback chairs, a fireplace, and a pool table lined with bright-purple felt.
New York magazine praised the pub's ability to exude refinement without feeling stuffy, noting that Pound & Pence, "lacks most of its district?s pretense and feels downright humble."
International Pub Cooking
Pound & Pence's British roots are apparent throughout the menu as well. In addition to serving classic pub staples?including chicken tikka masala and shepherd's pie?the staff also ensures that the shelves remain stocked with a healthy selection of English gins, single-malt scotches, and cognacs.
However, not every dish is steeped in British tradition. Items such as the cheddar-stuffed jalape?o poppers and the 10-ounce certified Angus burger topped with applewood bacon, barbecue sauce, and crispy onion strings showcase some of the menu's more contemporary American influences.
Bar 108 offers a wide array of international beer, wine, champagne, and liquor, and the full kitchen serves pub food like sliders and tacos. Since opening in January, the elegant and cool Soho hotspot has quickly become a popular gathering place for elegant and cool people, scoring numerous raving features by publications like The Luxury Spot and Time Out New York.