Living in NY gives me access to a wide range of bar styles. Some are dives, others cater to the beer crowd, while others are riding the wave of the speakeasy. One bar is currently bluring the line between craft cocktail joint and neighborhood dive. Subject quietly opened its doors in November ’12 with little fanfare. The bar program is headed by Chris Harrington (Momofuku, Saxon & Parole). At the heart of the program is the house made sodas and the variety of cocktails that make use of them.
So with that to go off of, 3 of us decided to check it out.
The facade of the bar is all glass, allowing you a wonderful view of the inside of the bar from the street and from the inside a perfect view for street watching. As soon as you walk in on the left there is a chalk board which heralds the beer and shot combo of the evening along with any specials. The rest of the bar is adorned in brick with earth tone accented by earth tones. On the well lit back bar the vintage Coca Cola soda fountain can also be seen.
Despite there being only one bartender on the night that we were there service was still good and we got our drinks in a reasonable amount of time. He was also knowledgeable and friendly.
First off there is a rotating list of beer and shot combos. I believe the shot was a combination of whiskey, root beery syrup, and cinnamon tincture. The shot was good and flavorful and served as a nice complement to the beer. For the cocktails we had the Matilda’s Brother which although no longer being on the menu, our bartender was more than willing to prepare for us. It is a mix of rye, green chartreuse, lime, and the orange cream syrup that is used to make their orange cream soda. We also had the Chai old fashioned, the Elderflower Sour, and the Rum and Root Beer. All of the cocktails were balanced and provided interesting flavor combinations.
Between the 3 of use we had the pulled pork sandwich, the panini, and the popcorn. The pork and the cole slaw was the consensus as the best sandwich between the two but neither was any slouch. The popcorn was freshly popped and seasoned with rosemary and other herbs, but alas it escapes me now. All of the food we had was good and just enough to fill the stomach.
It is an eclectic mix of craft cocktails, beer and shots that some how manages to work together in harmony. No matter your poison you cannot go wrong. The welcoming divvy atmosphere encourages you to enjoy both your tipple and your company and maybe even make some new friends while your there.