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Rattle N Hum
Taps: 40 / Bottles: 141
Cask: Y / Beer-to-Go: Y
$$ - reasonable
[ Bar, Eatery ]
14 E 33rd St
phone: (212) 481-1586
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vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | $$
Maybe a few beers in the city, maybe. I know MikeDrinkAle's playing first Sunday trading at Rattle N Hum and I'm thinking that I hadn't been there since the English cask fest (which was actually done quite well, cheers cheers), so I guess I'm due. Midtown now, caught up in some bullshit parade on Madison, which sends me further east out to Park, but they'll be no turning back onto 33rd or anywhere near here, no; you've got to go way north to turn, another 10 blocks I'm looking up (to see what's coming down), and back west some, but parking's a bitch with the did I mention there's a parade? "Don't worry", he says, "I've got a spot like right out front for you, seriously". And he did, but it was in a police barricade there for the parade and he just bullshitted the cops into it being okay, somehow, somehow. I really don't know how, but somehow...
14 seat wood "L" shaped bar and a foot rail off to the right. Large wood panel barback unit with stacked glassware on the marble counter, and 40 alternating taps on 2 panels over drainage above, booze on a third panel there, tiered. Another unit piece to the left holds more booze & shelved Anchor OSA magnums, DogFishHead booze, Rogue Rums, and growlers & Stone 22's lining the shelves above. Drop glass ball lighting over the bar, tap handles tap handles tap handles extending across the top of the unit and neons way way above the barback. Mounted flatscreens at both ends of the bar for why are we watching soccer?
2 short tables up front sharing a common bench and a lone table there. Some slight counter space adjacent to the bar holding my elbow and a glass, and in the area down past the bar, a ½ dozen shorty tables in a row sharing common bench pew action, and a dozen high top bar tables spread about some. To the rear of the rear, a, well, it looks like a service bar with a row of handpumps and a barback unit displaying bottled selections that don't really exist here, many of them anyway. Just random bottles, me thinks, or maybe a mix of haves and have nots. They call it the cask bar, I didn't notice whether they actually poured them from there or what.
Brown painted walls with beer quotes and a strange mural to the rear (brewing vessels & a bar scene of the length of the bar with the statue of liberty standing front row center, it having been relocated to Midtown a short time ago). Wood plank floorings, large exposed duct work painted copper overhead, brewery signage plastered on the ceiling and walls to the rear, and tap handles extending from trim above. Large flatscreens back there too, with mounted wall lamps, track spots and drop cylinder lamps overhead.
An impressive tap list, 40 in all, with nothing really of the suck, asserted by the "no crap on tap" board above the tap list printed on the wall at the end of the bar. Roughly ½ the list is other coast craft just now; 10 from Sierra Nevada alone (if its on the heels of a Sierra event here, I sure didn't know about it), plus another 7 from Stone, and a few loose west coast ends (Rogue Shakespeare Stout, Bear Republic Rebellion & Racer 5, Shmaltz Coney Island Lager). Another ¼ of 'em are from NY State; there's a good emphasis on our locals (Sixpoint Sweet Action, Southampton IPA, Brooklyn Cuvee De Cardoz & Summer Ale, Chelsea Checkercab Blonde & Scotch Ale, Blue Point Summer), and a few up and outstaters (Ommegang Witte, Southern Tier Unearthly Imperial IPA & Iniquity Black Ale). And the remaining ¼ are a mix of micros regional (DogFishHead Indian Brown Ale, Smuttynose Star Island Single, Magic Hat #9), and not (Left Hand 400 lb Monkey, Goose Island Imperial IPA), and a handful of imports just because (Weihenstephaner Hefe, Coniston Bluebird Bitter, St Louis Framboise, Hofbrau Maibock). Something for near everyone. Plus 4 beers on cask (Allagash Black, Sierra Nevada Porter, Bruery Saison De Lente, Stone Ruination on gravity); I myself am drinking the Allagash Black 'cause it's a great goddamn beer. At least that's where I started before moving on to the DogFishHead Indian Brown Ale and then guess what? Mike started breaking into the bottles he brought to trade and, um, can I get another small glass, please, thank you.
And they've got a bottled list, I hadn't seen it before. Roughly 40 bottles, a compliment to the 40 taps. Mostly craft 22's & 750's (some nice offerings), a bunch of fair to good imports, a cider, and a few macros; a smattering of a little bit of everything but why would you stray from the taps? (Okay, maybe for the Ithaca White Gold, Brooklyn Local 1 or the JP/Nogne/Stone collaboration).
Music just picked up some; Bowie, The Who, Mamas and Papas, even some old Beach Boys, it's all good. Mike says it's from his Ipod; he may be lying. Good and quiet this Sunday afterparadenoon, enjoying the pleasant comfortable Irish pubbiness. Definitely one of the best tap lists in Manhattan.
07-31-2009 13:22:02 |
More by slander
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | $$
A great addition to the mid town good beer scene. I visited for the first time last week and found the entire operation to be very impressive. Long bar to the right as you enter and a much smaller cask only bar at the rear. In between the entry/exit spot to the rear we found a well inhabited bar scene, a quite impressively well beer stocked bar and the aforementioned cask only bar. FIVE up on cask, NICE. 40 quality taps. They had a well organized beer menu for beergeekosetti (got to love a menu that quotes NYC beer hero Alex Hall), plenty of events, growlers to go, and a very beer savvy and beer respecting owner. Go, support this place, viva good beer in a pleasant environment in midtown NYC.
03-09-2009 23:42:18 |
More by Billolick
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | $$
I stopped in at Rattle 'N' Hum over the Thanksgiving day weekend and was surprised to find it pretty empty. (snobbishly)... I guess some people are just too busy to go out and have a beer!!! Kidding. Anyway, I was greeted by a pleasant lass from the north of Ireland named Marianne, and given a beer and lunch menu to peruse.
The place has a very comfortable feel to it with a wood plank floor, brown and black walls, and a copper colored air duct. The bar is long and it has nice stools, and above it hang what look like electric-light "Edison" bulbs but actually have several LEDs inside. Beyond the bar area is a smallish dining area with church pews and high top tables. Very nice. There's a cartoonish painting of the building of New York on the long wall, and quotes throughout, including some from Alex Hall (interesting). There are also 4 TVs that I noticed, but there may have been more.
It was a bit early for food for me, but the menu looked pretty enticing, and I thought that the prices were reasonable given the area.
The beer selection was fabulous. 30 taps? ...maybe more... it seemed like 50! Mostly local and regional, but with some interesting twists thrown in (Bear Republic for example). No Guinness here, by the way, but some very good craft stouts. I had a Chelsea Gotham Stout ($6.50) followed by a Deviant Triple ($7), neither of which I've ever had the pleasure of tasting before. There are three hand pumps, or is it 4? There was only one available at the time, Sixpoint Righteous Rye which I've had many times before and didn't try. I'm not sure if they're pouring "cask" or regular keg, but with the Alex Hall connection I'd go with the former rather than the later (although I know that most breweries producing "cask" beer these days are not really producing cask beer, but some kind of semi-cask that's got a lower carbonation level and may or may not be filtered and might or might not be dry-hopped).
They promote craft beer here, and on the wall they offer suggestions for substitutions of your favorite brands (ie. Guinness vs the local stouts, or Bass replaced by American amber ales). And I love that idea! To me it seems almost silly, but I do often run into people who are just learning and need a little help, so kudos to Rattle 'N' Hum.
All of that said, I quite enjoyed myself and they've made my list of places to return to - not an easy feat! However, I am also very eager to see what they're like on a busy night.
12-03-2008 22:16:40 |
More by NeroFiddled
vibe: 3 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | $$$
Up and coming place, with everything on tap being great and virtually no duplication with The Ginger Man. So that alone was worth the walk over. Service was not as fast as Ginger Man, the staff is going through its paces. Its a deecnt sized bar, and several tables to the side. A typical bar, and perhaps on the smaller side for Manhattan. Music was forgettable, the crowd less Yuppy on average and more relaxed, and higher percentage of guys particulary not in suits, than The Ginger man. Had the Righteous Rye. Smuttynose Finest Kind, and Bear Black Bar (nitro). Food is apparently decent.
05-15-2009 15:37:14 |
More by northyorksammy
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | $$
Stopped in here then night before the first phish show as we were looking for a good place to grab a few pints, and the place was rocking. Immediatly made my way over to the bar and was greeted promptly, great selection here I have to admit. Nearly everything I would expect from the area and then some, really very well done. Opted for a captain lawrence double and moved on. Nicely laid out and a cool, really nice crowd. I coudl really see myslef hanging out here more often as the place just felt good. But it was a short visit and I was off to the show, but no doubt I would stop in here again.
12-30-2009 02:15:21 |
More by mikesgroove
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | $$$$
Even though I live in Midtown Manhattan and love beer, I had never visited this famous beer bar. So recently I decided to remedy this situation.
Over two visits, I had two very different experiences. One, my first, was a total beer disaster. They were out of most beers and I left highly disappointed. On top of that, they had a mininum-charge for credit cards and I had to order another beer even though I just wanted to leave. Service was good, but what a beer fiasco!
But I e-mailed the owner/manager, Patrick, and he was nice and apologetic. We exchanged some e-mails and discussed beer. How nice is that! Great customer service, and a bar owner who actually cares. *Rare*.
My second visit was much better. Everything was there, 40 full taps and 2 casks. Still not the biggest fan of the tap list, for some reason, but can't complain much. They got a bit of everything, divided and rated by styles on the menu, but very few things I'd go crazy for.
Sierra Blackbird was a highlight, and also Bear Republic Big Bear Stout '09 and the mighty Avery Maharaja. Some regional rarities too, like Greenport Harbor Triton barleywine, Ithaca 13th Anniversary and Blue Point Old Howling Bastard.
Their brewery events are top-notch, with complete tap takeovers from brewers all over the US.
Love the ambience, down-to-earth, not preppy like The Gingerman. Music is cool too, rocking oldies, CCR, Johnny Cash, Doors, Rolling Stones...
Service is correct, not superb, not bad. Just fine. First time I got a super friendly, efficient girl who was sorry about the beer mess. Second time it was a tough Irish bartender who was more interested in talking to her Irish friend, but still, it was fine.
Haven't tried food but looks pretty boring/average (breaded-baked tilapia anyone?)
I like Gingerman better, and the Tiger and the Pony, but this is still a very good bar.
02-11-2011 23:29:38 |
More by DoubleSimcoe
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 2.5 | $$$
Stopped in after a business meeting since it was around the corner. The place is long and narrow and is quite dark. First thing I see is a wall that states "If You Like This <list of macros>" then Try This <list of micros in the style>". Very cool. The bar seats about 15 or so and there is a countered wall behind it with about 10 shorter stools. There are a few hi-tops in the front and a few tables in the rear.
I was greeted warmly and handed a beer menu without asking for it. The list is well ordered by style with a BA grade, alcohol percentage, and price. The nice selection of taps is easily visible at the bar if you want to select your beverage that way. There were 40 beers on tap with 2 casks sitting on the end of bar. The casks beers were Troegs Hopback Amber and Smutty IPA. Too many other beers to mention, but since there was a Southern Tier tasting party the night before 10 of the ST beers were on tap including Chokolat, Krampus, and Creme Brulee. Some other beers from Sixpoint, Ommengang, DFH, Green Flash, Troegs, Stone, Victory, and Brooklyn were on too.
The bartender was quick and responsive. The food which I have had on two seperate visits is pretty bad and expensive for pub grub as even some basic chicken fingers were overcooked and the personal pizza is awful.
But come here for the great beer selection. They have a weekday happy hour with $1 off drafts from 11am - 7pm and 11pm - 1am. Drafts are from $7-8 dollars and four 8oz tastings are $16.
01-22-2009 13:04:06 |
More by Gavage
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | $$$
Located only 2 blocks south of the Gingerman, but WAY less crowded (at least based on a Friday night when I tried them back-to-back). I could actually find a few seats at the bar, and I'm pretty sure there was an empty table in the back.
The taps list was excellent, something like 30 beers to choose from. I was actually more happy with the bottle list, a few Cantillons at not-bad prices.
Comfortable wood decor, 90s rock music but not too loud, friendly and attentive servers. Nothing bad to say about this place, I'll go here first (before Gingerman) next time I'm in the area.
08-21-2011 10:17:21 |
More by TurdFurgison
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | $$
The third stop of my Wednesday NYC pub crawl. Got here about 11:00pm, and the bar was pretty empty. I agree with other reviews, this place looks like an Irish bar they just quickly turned into a beer bar. There are Irish flags and breweriana everywhere, and I will admit I did like the brewery logos painted on the entrance walls. Sat at the bar and were served in a timely fashion by a female bartender. Selection was really outstanding. There were American craft beers from breweries from all over, and some you don't see often i.e. Cigar City. I started with a pint of the Alesmith Nutbrown ale on cask, which was very good. I then moved onto the Speakeasy Imperial Stout, which was oddly not served in a snifter but instead in a Bitburger German pils glass. Prices were decent for a place with such high quality beers. This place may not have the most character, but you won't be disappointed with the beer selection.
07-16-2010 18:23:17 |
More by morebeergood
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5 | $$$
In town and fresh off the Keystone line; Rattle N Hum is only blocks away from Penn Station.
Atmosphere: An Irish bar, RnH has the requisite handsome wooden bar and panelling that you'd demand from an Irish bar. A few tables upfront (standing tables that is) and a long bar lead to more table seating in the back. There were steps leading downstairs but I didn't pursue. The bar has one of my requisites for a good bar - a chalk board listing the tap selection.
Quality: Friendly service, good food and a very nice tap list. On a Wednesday afternoon the bar is lowkey, perfect place to hang out.
Service: A few bartenders, including a trainee, were manning the station admirably. I was greated and served promptly, so no complaints there.
Selection: The night before my visit was a Cigar City night. I reaped the benefits of the remnants, working my way through 5 different CC beers: saison, French vanilla maduro, espresso cubano, French pale ale, and baltic porter (not even gonna try to spell that one). There were at least 10 other CC beers on and another 10 craft offerings. Very nice selection - pricey but that comes with the territory.
Food: I had lunch, trying a few of the slider sandwiches and fries. I liked the lamb and feta slider best and recommend it. Fries were decent, a good accompaniment to the sliders.
05-28-2012 23:14:09 |
More by akorsak
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Rattle N Hum in New York, NY