Happy Hour or Liquid Lunch? Shorty’s Cheesesteak and Beer Special Is Good For Either

If you like to eat, chances are you like to drink (read: a lot of you are freakin’ lushes), so every Friday afternoon our Happy Hour Correspondent “Mamacita” will post 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.

A good cheese steak is a many splendored thing. The perfect bread, the finely sliced, glistening grilled steak, the peppers, the mushrooms, and, of course, the cheese. Shorty’s, previously Tony Luke’s, has been mentioned numerous times by ML, yet a proper +/- has never been bestowed. Clearly it’s my obligation to fill that void (It’s a tough job, but someone has to do it.)

Shorty’s claims to offer the only “authentic” south Philly style sandwiches in NYC. Rather then being a divey lunch counter they have adapted to Hells Kitchen’s unique flavor stepping up their game with a full bar, 22 beers on tap, and a focus on local breweries, craft beers, and cask ales. What caught my eye was their daily cheesesteak and pint special. Now I’ve gone on and on about burger and beer specials in town, but a cheesesteak happy hour? Now you’re speaking my language!

The vibe at Shorty’s is very laid back, there are many TV screens each tuned to a different game, and service is fast and friendly.

Because the space is long and narrow I found that you could easily have a conversation with someone at the bar, even if you are seated at the tables.  This makes the small space ideal for meeting new people, cheering on your team, listening to their Friday live DJ’s or catching a beer with a buddy.

The $9 “shorty” cheesesteak with a pint is available all week from 12-7pm and then again at 11pm till closing time.

Naturally I went with the cheesesteak with hot and sweet peppers, mushrooms, and provolone (yeah, that’s right, I got real cheese, but for those whom it matters you can also get it with wiz.) You can pick from any beer, so I opted for a Shorty’s amber ale.

messy cheesesteaks may not be photogenic

The bread held up to the beef juices and the sautéed mushrooms stood out as the absolute best addition (the peppers were over cooked and became just an afterthought.) It’s not the a full sized sandwich but it would definitely fill you up and satisfy.

Nailing down their happy hour specials can be confusing and are subject to change. It’s best to check out the website and call ahead to confirm. From 4-7pm beers are $1 off and well drinks are $5. To make things more convoluted from 7-11pm they have specials like $4 Yuengling drafts, $12 select pitchers, $6 wiz sliders (basically 3 little cheesesteaks). So basically no matter when you go, there will be some food and drink deal available.

The + (What someone who likes this place would say)

  • Cheesteak! Beer! Under $10, nuff said
  • There’s a second late-night happy hour till closing for those needing their midnight food fix
  • Like a beer with your lunch? Special starts at noon
  • Large selection of beers to choose from for your inner beer snob and a full bar for hard liquor drinkers
  • Nice long bar, comfortable seating and friendly locals

The – (What someone who dislikes this place would say)

  • Small space so seating is limited especially during a game or weekend
  • I can grab a cheap steak sandwich elsewhere for less, I don’t need Philly “authenticity”
  • Not health food on any level, including the carb filled beer

Shorty’s, 576 Ninth Ave (btw 41st & 42nd), 212-967-3055


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