ML Happy Hour: Follow The Light To The Carriage House

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” 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.

It is always hard to lose a loved one and I shed an 80 proof tear when I heard the tragic news that the Subway Inn had apparently closed. Upon hearing that reports of its death had been greatly exaggerated, I breathed a mightily sigh of relief. However, all this did give me cause to reflect on just how desolate this particular area of Midtown is, especially for one with my refined taste in drinking establishments. But ladies and gents there is one other grimy flickering light raging against that vast sea of darkness. Friends, I give you The Carriage House.

Compared to its surroundings Carriage House has the charisma of a dark alley and that’s just the way we like it. Straddled by Bloomberg and Bloomingdale, and surrounded by designer furniture shops you almost certainly can’t afford, sits this humble Irish pub. No gilded chandeliers illuminates her, just the dim track lighting, jukebox glow, and an old yellow sign above the bar reading “Wines Beer Cafe Liquor.”

The pub dates all the way back to 1895 and was once one of the original Blarney Stones. Its incarnation as Carriage House began in 1992 and despite the fake pearls before real swine approach of the local establishments Carriage is not an artisanal, oenophile, ironic, retro…whatever lounge. No, this is a bar with all the common comforts you’d expect in your local watering hole like a pin ball machine, dart board, cigar-store Indian (al la Bull Moose Saloon) and yes, a pool table plus just enough TVs to satiate those in need of a football fix.

Though after hours are usually filled with local employees grabbing a burger and beer, day drinkers include your staple senior citizen soaking up some suds.

Weekly drink specials lean towards the saccharine sweet, like ‘raspberry beret’s for $5, and ‘soco lime’ or ‘apple bottom’ shots at $4. Regular happy hour is Monday to Friday, 3pm-7pm and later 12am-3am, with $1 off all drinks, and $3.50 pints of Bud and Bud Light.

Long story short, for the imbiber this part of town is a dessert and the watering holes are few and far between -with the ones you can trust even further. The Carriage House is one of them. Plus, if you warm up your seat long enough a sweet bartender might treat you to a tipple on the house.

THE + (what someone who likes this bar might say)

  • An island in a sea of suckitude
  • All the drinking entertainment a guy could ask for: pool table, darts, pin ball and sports TV
  • Easy going and unpretentious crowd
  • Standard pub grub

THE – (what someone who dislikes this bar might say)

  • $3.50 Bud is a special??
  • Of the 2, I’d pick Subway Inn
  • I already spend too much time around here for work, I rather head downtown

Carriage House, 219 E 59th St., (btw. 2nd/3rd Ave.) (212) 838-9464


  • Mamacita,
    Why are you writing ML Happy Hour if you’d rather go downtown? Or did you mean south of 57th midtown area?

    • The +/- is in the POV of the person that might work in this area and what they might like/dislike. (AKA “what someone who likes this bar would say or what someone who dislikes this bar would say) i.e If you have had your fill of this part of midtown by the end of the work day, then this bar may not convince you to spend the rest of your evening there. I just noticed I didn’t fully write out the description like Zach does, I just edited it for clarity. Thank for pointing it out :-)

  • Well it looks like The Carriage House is a great place to unwind & to hang with friends who come to town. A good suggestion for residents of midtown Manhattan.

  • M, Thank you for using the flash when you photographed the barmaid but tell her to wear white next time

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