Midtown Happy Hour: A Lush’s Look at Manchester Pub
If you like to eat, chances are you like to drink (read: a lot of you are freakin’ lushes), so I thought maybe it was time to introduce a happy hour column to the site. Every week, our Happy Hour Correspondent “Mamacita” posts about a different bar in Midtown that fits the Midtown Lunch mentality: unhealthy food, not lame (unless it’s lame in a cool way), and most importantly… cheap.
Zach has written about Manchester Pub’s sandwich challenge entry, and Lunch’er Sir-Eats-a-Lot emailed us about a few of their newer menu items, but I thought it was about time this pub received an official once over from this lush. Manchester is pretty small on the inside and there are 3 seating options: the bar, the wobbly cocktail tables or a few long wooden tables set off to the left. On my latest visit I arrived at 5:30pm and I was lucky to snag one of the long tables.
Right now the bar is decked out in Halloween decorations and the potpourri of restroom filled the air. The night I was there, the crowd was an interesting mixture of casually dressed regulars sitting at the bar, some hipsters, and also after work types in business attire occupying the tables. The atmosphere is upbeat, the female bartenders were perky and buybacks were passed around to the regulars. MP takes its beer seriously and features a nice selection of craft and microbreweries. On a monthly basis breweries like Southern Tier, Flying Dog, Rogue, Piraat, Lighthouse, Lagunitas, and the most recently, Shmaltz (maker of He’brew and Coney Island lager) host various events and tastings.
Happy hour is from 4 to 7pm with $3 Bud and Coors and one dollar off select drafts like Guinness, Sierra Nevada, and Radeberger. Happy hour also includes a dollar off sandwiches but I’m a sucker for chicken and waffles so I fed my soul food craving. Sadly, the fried chicken was not as good as I expected, maybe even worse than the previous review.
The maple syrup was hard and chewy (how do you do that??) plus it tasted more like honey then maple. The waffle was unmemorable. The chicken was a bit like a McNugget on steroids, but there isn’t any of that crispy coating you’d usually get with this dish. I wasn’t expecting Roscoe’s or Amy Ruth’s but maybe Manchester needs to just stick to its burgers instead.
Despite that the music was good and kept just loud enough for conversation to flow easily and the service was excellent. My only other advice to the Manchester Pub’s owners- clean your bathrooms. With such a small space I could smell the loo from the bar. Even Dalton’s, with their old crumbling ceilings, and crowd to match, had a fresh and clean can.
- Beer aficionados will like the selection and monthly events
- Regardless of my take on the chicken and waffles, other items on the menu are good, greasy and available till late in the night
- Manchester is small and neighborly, encouraging repartee with the bartenders and owners -that tend to hang out with the crowd
- Oh man, I can smell the bathroom as soon as I stepped in, not exactly whetting my appetite
- If you don’t get here early the regulars will take up any good seating
- Larger parties can be a problem
Manchester Pub, 920 2nd Ave., 212-935-8901
Post and photos by Mamacita