The Stinger Cocktail Bar & Kitchen
Time Out says
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There are some names you associate with the New York bar world (Audrey Saunders, Toby Cecchini, the late Sasha Petraske), and Todd English ain’t one of them. Of course, the James Beard Award–winning Boston chef has had celebrity-making success with his global portfolio of restaurants (including New York’s Plaza Food Hall), glossy cookbooks and TV segments, but for his nearly three decades in the business, English never fully delved into the NYC cocktail-bar scene—until now. Located off the lobby of Times Square’s InterContinental Hotel, English’s honey-toned cocktail lounge is split into two distinct areas: a fireplace-lit parlor set with leather armchairs and marble-topped side tables, and a dark-wood barroom peddling crowd-pleasing—if largely uninspired—cocktails and global comfort food.
ORDER THIS: The running (and, at times, hammy) theme of the drinks menu—from global barman Francesco Lafranconi (Palace Hotel in Gstaad, Switzerland; Hotel Cipriani in Venice)—is the honeybee, and for good reason: The InterContinental boasts two live hives on its rooftop, and they’re inhabited by 60,000 bees. The nectar is used in concoctions like the namesake cocktail, which caps a sweet-tart mix of Grey Goose Le Citron, herb liqueur and lemon juice with a demi-sec mead foam ($18), and the fizz-and-fruit Queen Bee punch, a Belvedere quaff further sweetened with Chandon rosé, crème de pêche and berries ($58 for four guests, $96 for eight).
GOOD FOR: A buzz for any tolerance. Along with those large-format punch bowls, single cocktails are available in three sizes—the two-ounce Beehave ($9), the six-ounce Buzz ($18) and the 12-ounce Sting ($28)—or as a tasting flight of three ($18), making it easy to sample drinks without having to settle. (The scattered service may, at times, lead to your two-ounce order getting upgraded to a six-ounce order, without the extra charge—not that we’re complaining.)
THE CLINCHER: This being a Todd English spot, food is obviously on offer. Honey plays a starring role here as well, from cheese boards drizzled with the stuff ($24) to grilled shrimp with honey cocktail sauce ($23). Skip aggressively sauced buffalo chicken lollipops ($16) for honey-glazed ribs hit with the smoky heat of chilies ($19).
300 W 44th St
|Cross street:||between Eighth and Ninth Aves|
|Price:||Average cocktail: $20|
|Opening hours:||Daily 11am–1am|
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