Gastropubs Downtown Manhattan, NYC

Gastropubs Downtown Manhattan, NYC

Gastropubs in NYC, especially in Downtown Manhattan are making a huge impact amidst the more traditional restaurants and cafes.

This relatively new culinary phenomena celebrates everything that is good about going out for drinks and dinner. By definition, gastropubs are all about superb, handcrafted food and drinks, but also have  warm, friendly, welcoming atmosphere as well. Your neighborhood gastropub is the perfect escape from a typical New York work day.

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Forget about your mundane, tasteless, average bar food, like bowls of pretzels and chips or three-day old Shepherd's Pie. At a gastropub, the food is just as important as the beers and cocktails on offer, if not more so. Gastropubs give their patrons elevated bar food and inventive culinary creations that emphasize fresh, wholesome ingredients, ones that will tempt your palate and tickle your fancy.

Let's take a look at what is in store for you at some of downtown Manhattan's premier gastropubs.

Highlands, NYC

Chef Matthew Hardner, a native of New Zealand, grew up in a household, where the meals of the day were prepared using veggies and fruits straight from the family garden. Wherever he went, (Australia, South East Asia, Florida and North Carolina), Chef Hardner sought out the best farms and markets, in order to provide his customers with the best ingredients possible. That tradition of using only farm fresh ingredients continues today at Highlands gastropub.

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You'll love chef's inventive take on old school shepherd's Pie. How does mixed mushroom shepherd's pie, grab you? It's savory and just a little bit different. Another dish that draws raves from the Highlands crowd is the roasted, beer-brined chicken with Kabocha squash, crimini mushrooms, smoked bacon and barley broth. Whenever you stop by, be sure to order Chef Hardner's signature cider braised pork shank with celeriac slaw, apple chutney, cider gravy and grain mustard yogurt. It's a true mosaic of flavors, all on one plate.

Starter selections include Whiskey bread with sweet Scotch butter, pearl barley risotto and mushrooms on toast accompanied by sunchoke and black truffle mayonnaise and a soft boiled egg. Owned by expatriate Scots, Highlands gives you an authentic taste of what it's like to eat and imbibe at a Scottish pub. Beers and ales are by the draft or bottle and they have a great selection of Scottish ales, as you might expect. But, you'll also find a few beers from Belgium, jolly old England, Italy and Maine as well.

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You can expect to enjoy great cocktails at Highlands. Each one has been carefully crafted. Hands down, though, the one that you simply have to try is the People's Poet. This concoction consists of mint verbena infused vodka, organic winter pear puree, maraschino liqueur, lemon and a splash of soda.

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Location and Hours

150 west 10th Street, New York NY 10014
(212) 229-2670


Mon to Thu  5:30 pm to 1 AM
Fri and Sat    5 PM to 3 AM
Sun             5 PM to  12 AM


The Malt House, NYC

The vibe at this popular Village gastropub is rustic-chic. There's brick and wood everywhere. The Malt House is a favorite of local residents and visitors alike. In fact, The Malt House's reputation is so stellar, the owners have recently opened a second location at Nine Maiden Lane in the Financial District, by popular demand. Hey, why not? Every downtown Manhattan neighborhood should have it's very own Malt House to relax in after work and on the weekend.


According to the Jimmy Buffet song, it's always five o'clock somewhere. When the clock hits five, downtown, you know that it's time to head over to The Malet House to sample on of their blood orange screwdrivers, Bellinis (made with real peach puree) or their signature Maltmosa. This potent brew consists of wheat beer, orange juice and champagne. Craft beers are always on tap, if that's your pleasure.

Elevated tavern fare includes pan seared short rib sliders, beer and bacon battered onion rings, hand-cut truffle fries  and buttermilk bites, (Southern-style fried chicken). Entrees will give you your money's worth and then some. Best bets are the Shrimp Scampi in a white wine butter reduction, the prosciutto wrapped roasted pork loin and the Cowboy rib eye with cheddar mashed potatoes, market vegetables and Texas mustard. The Malt House burger is meant to be savored with every bite. Your burger is topped with hickory smoked bacon, lettuce, an oven roasted tomato, pesto aioli and your choice of cheese.

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Location and Hours

206 Thompson street, New York NY 10012
(212) 228-7713


Mon to Fri   12 PM to 4 AM
Sat and Sun  11 AM to 4 AM


The Spotted Pig, NYC

This is the place that started it all! The Spotted Pig is celebrated as the first gastropub to open in New York, back in 2004. The owners, Chef April Bloomfield and noted restaurateur, Ken Friedman are just as interesting as the food that they serve. Michelin-starred, many times over, Chef April Bloomfield hails from Birmingham, England, where she completed her culinary studies. Chef Bloomfield honed her craft at various restaurants throughout Britain, Ireland and Berkeley, California, before settling down in  New York.

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Originally from Los Angeles, Ken Friedman wasn't always in the restaurant business. In fact, ken had established himself as a very successful concert promoter, having got his start in the music business under legendary impressario Bill Graham, founder of the Fillmore in San Francisco. But, despite his success, at age forty, Ken decided that it was time for a change and he did a career 180, opening his own restaurant. Ken always enjoyed entertaining his clients in the city's fine dining establishments, so he decided  that the restaurant industry would be his second act in life. Appetizer recommendations would have to include the smoked haddock chowder with Pancetta and house made crackers. If you like to order Calamari when you go out, then try Chef Bloomfield's squid stew with fennel, potatoes and garlic aioli. You will never look at calamari the same way again.

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Entrees are a nice choice of both meat and fish dishes. The skirt steak with creamed kale and sauteed wild mushrooms is to die for. It is melt-in-your mouth good. Skate is not found on a lot of menus, but it should be, particularly the way that Chef Bloomfield prepares this dish. The fish is pan roasted with turnips, potatoes, capers and butter. Don't ignore Chef's sides. They're fabulous. Try their signature shoestring fries, the plate of beets and greens (tasty and good for you), the sweet potato mashed with cumin or the heavenly roasted cauliflower with tomato and anchovy.

The Spotted Pig has stood the test of time in a city where restaurants, cafes and, yes, even gastropubs, tend to come and go. Come in and see for yourself just what the buzz is all about.

Location and Hours

314 West 11th Street, New York NY 10014
(212) 620-0393


Mon to Fri 12 PM to 5 PM (lunch), 5:30 PM to 2 AM (dinner)
Sat and Sun  11 AM to 5 PM (brunch and lunch), 5:30 PM to 2 AM (dinner)


Spitzer's Corner, New York

At Spitzer's Corner, they are proud of their gastropub fare and justifiably so. When you go to Spitzer's Corner, make sure that you come hungry. The food is so very worth it. There's a playful, happening atmosphere at Spitzer's. Casual and friendly, this is a great place to unwind after work with a bunch of friends. And, if you are flying solo some evening, grab a seat at one of the long, wooden communal tables and start a conversation with the person next to you. You might just find a new friend.

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Spitzer's has over forty craft beers on tap as well as a fine selection of wines by the glass and some friendly bartenders who will be happy to mix it up for you. The bar is well stocked with liquor. New beers, just added to their list, include Troegs Nugget nectar and Bells cherry stout.

As far as  good eating goes, Spitzer's menu has got you covered, from salads and bar bites to Burgers, sandwiches and entrees. The steamed, grilled artichoke, served with sweet aioli, is a great starting off point on their extensive menu. Another dressed up veggie app are the pan roasted Brussel sprouts with dried cranberries and candied walnuts. You can't go wrong with the Kobe beef sliders or the fish tacos with grilled corn.

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Main plates include duck leg with mixed greens, Fish and chips, steak frites and mussels. The mussels are a very interesting choice. They are served up, almost like a stew, in a white wine broth and accompanies by  tomatoes, scallions, shallots,piquillo peppers and hot sausage. The toasted baguette slices are just made for dipping into that savory broth.

Spitzer's is THE place to celebrate all that is good about life, even if it's just about toasting the end of the work week.

Location and Hours

101 Rivington Street, New York NY 10002
(212) 228-0027


Mon to Thu  12 PM to 1 AM
Fri         12 PM to 4 AM
Sat         10 AM to 4 AM
Sunday      10 AM to 1 AM

Brinkley's, New York

The logo at Brinkley's is that of a cute, well dressed bear with a bicycle. Brinkley, the cartoon bear really sets the fun filled tone at this gastropub, that has been making friends and earning rave reviews, since it opened in 2009.

Brinkley's, (the bar, not the bear) has one of the most extensive lists of local New York State craft beer in the city. These craft brews are available by the can or bottle. As befits a good gastropub, they are not wanting when it comes to a refreshing glass of wine. And like their craft brews, New York State is well represented. Brinkley's wine list really is a celebration of New York's under the radar vineyards. They offer a nice beer and shot combo for only fifteen dollars, with the standout being the Genesee Cream Ale and Fernet Branca.


Signature cocktails include the upstate bellini with Pear, not peach, puree and  the Pisco Fever, made with Kappa Pisco, egg whites, simple syrup and fresh lime juice. Daily specials abound at Brinkley's. Mondays is chicken pot pie day. On Wednesdays, grandma's classic spaghetti and meatballs rule the day. On Thursdays, we get a little more adventurous with Thai green curry as the special. But rest assured, whatever day you stop by, your hunger will be more than satisfied by their regular menu.

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Plates to share include housemade roasted tomato flat bread, pigs in a blanket (sausages), in puff pastry with Dijon mustard and onion jam and the pimento cheese dip, which is outrageous. Sandwich highlights include the eggplant and chickpea burger,  grilled chicken and avocado and  the Lobster club. There are four varieties of sliders such as the california or pimento Burger. All slider plates come with your choice of waffle fries, sweet potato fries or the simple says it best, traditional, hand-cut french fries.

Settle in at Brinkley's and enjoy your evening. The company is good and the drinks and food are  just what you're looking for.

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Location and Hours

406 Broome Street, New York NY 10013
(212) 680-5600


Mon to Fri  11 30 AM to 2 AM
Saturday    10 AM to 2 AM
Sunday      10 AM to 2 AM



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