New York City-Lower West Manhattan
May 11, 2018
When is a dive bar not a dive bar? When it’s the baby of the Spotted Pig’s Ken Friedman and Freemans’ Taavo Somer, that’s when. The Rusty Knot is an attempt to create an old school neighbourhood joint, with an emphasis on simple, homely comforts over polished city sleekness. While there’s something a bit forced about the premise (these places should really evolve over years, they can’t be created with a finger-snap), they’ve just about cracked it. Located out on the western-most edge of the city, in terms of atmosphere it has a proper local, slightly grungy feel coupled with a nautical theme we particularly like the retro-saucy ladies on the mural behind the bar. The place is full of battered, age-worn chairs and marine kitsch, including a fish tank and a smattering of mermaids and anchors. Happy hour runs 4-7 and all nights Tuesdays, which now hosts the newly launched ‘queer party’ night (their words) Booty Clap, with DJ sets and 2 for 1 drinks to ensure a suitably raucous atmosphere. Rum based mixed drinks and three buck beer is the order of the day try their own Rusty Knot since you’re there, or the Dark and Stormy is guaranteed to hit the spot. (Given the vibe of the place, the wine list favours cheap and cheerful over choice, so we’d say stick with the cocktails). The bar snacks are affordable and seriously tasty pretzel dogs, tacos, shellfish soup, and spicy pickles. The crowds betray this place’s hip roots, so you better get here early if you want to snag a table.