Get $5 Wine at L’ybane’s Happy Hour
If you like to eat, chances are you like to drink (read: a lot of you are freakin’ lushes), so every week 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. Mamacita is taking this week off, so Clay has stepped up to the plate.
When drinking in Midtown, I tend to pay a little (and sometimes a lot) extra for luxuries like outdoor seating, a quality selection or great food. Still, when I come across a proper bargain, I get pretty excited. So when I stumbled on a sign advertising $5 glasses of wine at L’ybane, a French Mediterranean restaurant on 8th Avenue, I knew I had to investigate.
Sitting among the middling food options on 8th avenue, surrounded by tourists and across from the ‘Lullaby of Broadway,’ the Milford Plaza hotel, I was skeptical at first. Still, you don’t find too many good deals on wine and a seat down the long bar beckoned, so…
I figured the wine list must just have one red and one white wine. Turns out i was wrong. The list includes a few of each, and also sangria, a sparkling and mimosas. Spiffy. Note that wine drinkers get all the deals here. If you’re looking for beer, look elsewhere. The bottle list is full of crappy brews that might be your thing, but certainly not for the $9 price tag. Drafts are $7, but I didn’t bother even looking to see what was available.
I started out with the sangria, which was light and sweet. I was a little disapointed that they didnt give me any fruit, but I got over it.
I also tried the sparkling, which was fresh and bubbly and the malbec, which was also pretty good. All the wine is nameless table wine, but certainly tasty enough for a happy hour round or three.
Also on the menu were a few snacks including a hummus bar and a pita pizza, which I decided to give a try.
Flatbread topped with some veggies and fresh mozzarella, it’s cute and tastes pretty good. The only problem is that either the cheese or the veggies weren’t drained well enough because each slice was dripping with accumulated liquid. That made it a little messy to eat, so I’d recommend using a fork.
Given the area, i don’t expect to be back near L’ybane again soon, but the next time I have to pick a place for drinks near Times Square that’s not going to gouge me, I’ll definitely return. If you work nearby, it’s a good, low-key alternative to the super-divey and the extra flashy spots on 9th Avenue.
The + (What people who likes this place would say)
- It’s the best deal you’ll find on wine that doesn’t come from a box.
- A comfortable space that doesn’t look like the amusement park nonsense of Times Square.
The – (What people who don’t like this place would say)
- I want fruit in my sangria.
- Why’s the beer so pricey?
- The food could be better.
L’ybane, 709 8th Avenue (btw. 43+44th), 212-582-2012