Midtown Happy Hour: Pod 39 Rooftop Lounge Has A Great View But Not Much Else

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 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.

Ah, New York in the springtime. I can’t think of anything better… Except for drinking outside in New York in the springtime. So I’m beginning my journey of outdoor bars in Midtown — I only have a small window of time when the outdoor bar areas open for winter and my fat ass gets to hot to sit outdoors, you see.

First stop: the rooftop lounge (which, when fully functioning, will serve the same food as Salvation Taco) at the newly opened Pod 39 hotel. I’ve been exited to visit since I caught wind of the hotel catering to NYC visitors on a budget, hoping that would translate to the bar and restaurant.

Clay visited Salvation Taco just after it opened in December, and he had good things to say. Is the food cheap? Hell no. These are the most expensive tacos I’ve ever seen. Are they delicious? Yes. We tried a selection of tacos — I really enjoyed the sweetbread variety.

Currently, the only food you can order at the rooftop lounge are chips and guacamole. For $10, that’s some expensive guac, but let me tell you it had a perfect spicy kick to it, and better than perhaps any guacamole I’ve tried.

Prices were disappointingly high with no Happy Hour drink specials. Consequently, this is a major Midtown Happy Hour fail. Although the beer selection is interesting with drafts like Lefts Hand “The Stranger Pale Rye”, Cicso “Grey Lady White Ale”, and cans like Crispin “Brown’s Lane Cider”, drafts are no less than $8 and cans/bottles range from a $6 Modelo Especial Lager to a $25, 750 mL Element “Extra Special Bitter”.

What the rooftop lounge obviously has going for it is the view. When the weather’s nice.

And the vibe on top of that roof with everyone exited for spring is nothing to scoff at. It is a perfect place for relaxed, after work drinks with colleagues.

Open a little earlier (currently it doesn’t open until 5:00), include a happy hour special for both food and booze, and you would have a bar I’d highly recommend. In its current state, I would say that unless you’re a sucker for scenery and drinking al fresco, you might give it a little time to get settled in. In the meantime, give a shout out to your favorite rooftop bar in the comments — especially if you know of one with a good happy hour!

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

  • The rooftop bar has a spectacular view of Manhattan.
  • When the weather’s nice, that outdoor bar vibe is fantastic.
  • At least the one food item on the menu, the guacamole and chips, are under $10… and they are delicious.
  • I love trying new beers, and they have a great selection.

The – (What somebody who doesn’t like this place would say)

  • The drinks are way too expensive and there is no happy hour at all. ML HAPPY HOUR FAIL!
  • Right now, you can’t order any food except guac and chips… and I need it to soak up the alcohol I’m drinking.
  • The bar doesn’t open until 5:00 and I usually like to get my drink on WAY earlier than THAT!

Salvation Taco and Rooftop Lounge in the Pod 39 Hotel, 145 E 39th St (btw. Lex+3rd).


Leave a Reply

You must log in or register to post a comment.