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Christopher Ross

Christopher Ross

Listings and reviews (6)

Gallow Green

Gallow Green

3 out of 5 stars

There is an argument to be made that New York’s best shows are staged not in theaters, but in restaurants and bars. Like the 19th-century opera audiences who trained their binoculars on each other’s boxes, each night we seat ourselves en masse in darkened watering holes and restaurants to preen, size each other up and—almost as an afterthought—eat or drink something, too. So when a venue incorporates a layer of theatricality to the performance already being staged by its patrons, how do they react? That’s the question raised by the dreamy, overgrown rooftop bar just south of Hell’s Kitchen called Gallow Green, which sits atop a warehouse that operates as the “McKittrick Hotel” for the wildly popular interactive theater performance Sleep No More. In the early evening, the height affords a regal view of gleaming West Side buildings and the cloud-streaked horizon. A floor of pebbles and slate, trellises woven with flowers and weathered wooden tables recall an upstate country home left adorably to seed. But as the sun descends over the Hudson and darkness encroaches, something stranger occurs. Christmas lights encircling small trees and the rafters overhead blink to life. A brass band waltzes dizzyingly through a funereal tune. An attractive waitstaff in virginal white uniforms materializes out of the shadows, while actors borrowed from the show downstairs weave in between tables, talking to guests in faux-British accents and lending the place the feel of a garden party lost in t

Gallow Green

Gallow Green

3 out of 5 stars

Gallow Green is the rooftop bar at the McKittrick Hotel, which occasionally allows children.

The Bronx Beer Hall

The Bronx Beer Hall

3 out of 5 stars

Located deep in the Bronx’s historic Little Italy—where red sauce runs as thick as blood (Robert De Niro discovered Joe Pesci here)—is the best indoor bazaar that most New Yorkers have never heard of: the Arthur Avenue Retail Market. A product of the city’s initiative to get pushcart peddlers off the street in 1940, the bustling market of 20-odd vendors has sold sausage links, cigars, flowers and fruit to locals for decades. Last month, neighborhood-bred brothers Anthony and Paul Ramirez shook the dust off the tradition-bound institution and opened a fresh-faced beer bar, whose on-trend offerings (cider, half-pints, canned craft beers) and handsome, modern digs (salvaged-wood counters, white-tile walls) have provided a jolt of youthful energy to this uptown fixture. ORDER THIS: Five taps pour a rotating selection of all-local brews (of course), including two from nearby Jonas Bronck’s Beer Co.: an earthy, dry Big Apple cider ($6) and a crisp, mildly spiced Woodlawn Weiss ($6). For a richer sip, the creaminess of the Keegan’s Mother Milk Stout ($6) from the Hudson River Valley conceals a coffeelike bitterness. Alongside the drafts, David Greco—also owner of the market’s beloved Mike’s Deli, where he worked as a boy under his father—oversees an extensive menu stocked with vendor goods. A thick, meaty beef-liver sausage ($7) comes with mix-and-match sides, like tender shredded cabbage; a sirloin-and–filet mignon burger ($12) arrives inside a crusty, flaky bun on a birch wood pla

Boulton & Watt

Boulton & Watt

3 out of 5 stars

Lately, the fever for steampunk—a sci-fi fantasy mash-up of Victorian costumes and steam-powered gadgetry—has influenced everything from cinema (Oz the Great and Powerful) to fashion (Alexander McQueen). In New York, the otherworldly aesthetic has carried through to bar design at joints like cocktail den Gin Palace and Prospect Heights dive the Way Station. At the latest addition to the gaslight-and-goggles scene, Boulton & Watt, ceiling fans spin via an ornate, belt-operated pulley system. Like an overly enthusiastic Civil War reenactment, the baroque conceit at this East Village haunt can seem forced, but luckily, the superlative gastropub plates and remarkably well-balanced drinks have real bona fides. ORDER THIS: Sip one of the nine top-notch tipples, which riff on classic cocktail formulas. The First Word ($12)—a variation on Prohibition-era favorite the Last Word—softens the woody heat of bonded Rittenhouse rye with herbaceous yellow Chartreuse, while the Mexican Revolver ($12) blends jalapeño-infused tequila, lime, agave and prosecco into a fizzy, spicy spin on a margarita. Our favorites from the menu of hearty English pub bites included a traditional Scotch egg ($12), whose thick, crunchy shell of chorizo and ground pork conceals a dreamily soft, just-boiled egg, and the beer-battered day-boat cod ($18)—the soft white fish encased in a flaky crust—with a side of herb-roasted fries. GOOD FOR: The night’s first stop. Gastropubs often overleverage their bar or restaurant

Tooker Alley

Tooker Alley

Del Pedro, the owner of this tidy Prospect Heights cocktail den on bustling Washington Avenue, cuts a singular silhouette on New York’s mixology scene. Pegu Club regulars will recognize the bald gentle giant from his days holding court in that Manhattan high church of mixology. At this scruffier drinkery, Pedro’s passions—Americana, jazz, counterculture—inform everything from the bar itself (made from a truck flatbed) to the bookish menu (which references Chekhov). The spot achieves a rare quality in an era of paint-by-numbers cocktail lounges: The intensely personal Tooker Alley generates a genuine human pulse. ORDER THIS: Sample from among nine original house drinks and six historical incarnations of the martini. Pedro cleverly employs spirits that are elsewhere relegated to the dusty back bar (Dubonnet, B&B) to lend retro, herbal notes to fruit-forward sips. In the bright, tropical Jala-Pinã ($11), serrano-infused honey syrup mingles with pineapple-infused rum and lemon juice, leaving a lingering, pleasant burn. Of the martini variations, the Marguerite ($12)—one of the first to feature dry vermouth—stands out as a velvet-gloved iron fist of a drink. Served steely cold, dry vermouth and orange bitters soften a floral Plymouth gin, making for a cocktail so smooth, you might forget it’s nothing but booze. GOOD FOR: A chill weekday slug. Understated decor (Edison bulbs set against mirrored discs, heavy iron stools) and a harmonious soundtrack (well-curated jazz) melt evenly i

The Guthrie Inn

The Guthrie Inn

3 out of 5 stars

Cocktail enthusiasts haven’t had much use for the 6 train above 42nd Street. The Upper East Side, so rich in greenery and regal townhouses, is comparatively wanting when it comes to nightlife. But the Guthrie Inn—joining Earl’s Beer and Cheese and ABV—is the latest in a series of hipster-baiting bars colonizing the upper reaches of the UES. Owner Adam Clark, who also has a hand in Earl’s next door, has squeezed this bar into a lean, wooden hallway of a space. The pressed-tin ceiling, shelves stacked with amari and exposed-brick walls may bring to mind a snobby speakeasy, but the place mostly maintains the shabby, warm comfort of a neighborhood bar—the kind of place you could roll into on a Tuesday night and throw back a martini while wearing a T-shirt and shorts. DRINK THIS: The menu—from Amor y Amargo’s Christopher Elford—is composed of classics ($10) and house originals ($12), with the latter category further divided into “Shaken & Refreshing” drinks and “Stirred & Boozy” ones. But even these creations don’t stray far from the classic formulas, with pleasing and familiar results. The stiffness of the Jackson Ward, a Manhattan variation made with Old Grand Dad 100 Proof bourbon, is leavened with herbaceous and bitter Nardini amaro and Punt e Mes vermouth. The Expat might lure sweet-seekers with its promise of pineapple juice and blended rum, but it’s a tropical drink for grown-ups, with herbal Ramazzotti tempering the sugar. The Guthrie Julep, served in a gleaming, copper-ba

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