“Fall is a wonderful time in New York.” You’ll probably hear that, or a version close to it, at least once a day for the next five weeks. Fine, sure, it’s a magical season of sweaters and oddly colored leaves, but autumn also augurs endings and death (not to get too morbid on you); one such tragic reality of the cool weather is the end of patio drinking. So it is with bittersweet glee that we recommend the following stretch of Second Avenue for one last drink outside in the New York evening.
About a pint glass’ throw from the corner of 10th Street is Ryan’s, a nondescript bar of the Irish persuasion with a fenced-in sidewalk area, just large enough to contain eight tables. I confess, I’ve never made the trip inside Ryan’s no-doubt shadowy confines, a place I imagine is populated by hardened rummies who salt their beer. No, all my drinking here has been between April and November, sitting in the sun with a front row seat on what remains a marvelous stretch of New York street. People may have reason to complain about the gentrification of the East Village, but any given hour at Ryan’s patio reveals the downtown diversity that just won’t go away: the ancient Ukrainian woman with a gloved hand outstretched lightly on the arm of her husband; the group of teenagers tossing Spanglish epithets bank and forth as the sun goes down; the immaculately dressed fashionista adventuring downtown; the forty-something hipsters trading stories about how real the 80s were. It’s all here at Ryan’s, so get yourself out there before it’s too cold.
Ryan's Irish Pub is located at 151 Second Ave, 212-979-9511