Welcome to a special happy hour edition of Thirsty Thursday here on Dish + Drink. This week, I wandered to Manhattan’s West Village neighborhood for a few drinks on my way home to Hoboken. After just missing the happy hour deal at a place nearby, my friends and I decided to try Swine on Hudson Street.
I’d heard about the place before and recalled reading that the bar had four-star ratings, a solid happy hour deal, and a good vibe. So, we were pretty excited to check it out.
I, accompanied by three friends, ascended the stairs to find a dimly lit, well-decorated bar that was only moderately busy. The host informed us that the happy hour deal only applies for patrons who sit at the bar or at a high top table directly across from it. All other seating areas are exempt and instead are part of the sit down, full service space for patrons looking to dine and enjoy waiter service.
Thankfully, we were able to grab seats at the high top table across from the bar, so we enjoyed the happy hour deal: all cocktails remain full price, but all beers on tap are $5 and all tap wines are $5 until 7:30pm.
Ordinarily, I would have stuck within the confines of happy hour from the start, but Swine offers such an impressively creative list of cocktails that I felt compelled to try one. The Boulevardier of Broken Dreams (bacon-infused Wild Turkey bourbon, apricot and smoked hickory bitters, cynar, and Antica Carpano Formula) and the Tea Time In Dollywood (earl grey-infused Old Overholt rye, lemon, mint, and simple syrup) put me in a tough position. I couldn’t decide, and asked the bartender to choose for me. So, she mixed the Boulevardier of Broken Dreams and served it on the rocks with an orange peel.
In hindsight, I probably would have preferred the more herbal rye cocktail that is the Tea Time In Dollywood, but I did quite enjoy the Boulevardier of Broken Dreams regardless. Its smoky undertones were matched well with the sweetness in the bourbon and savory bacon. After all, Swine is known for its meat.
Regardless, I polished off the Boulevardier of Broken Dreams and proceeded to order an Ommegang Witte on draft. Since it was still happy hour, I was lucky enough to enjoy this delicious and highly rated witbier for only $5. What I love about Ommegang Witte is that it fits perfectly into the wheat beer category that I personally enjoy so much. It’s moderately low in ABV (5.1 percent), which I don’t love, but it’s also extremely low in bitterness (it boasts an 11 on the IBU scale).
After the Ommegang, I had one more beer before we left Swine. As many of you know who have followed along with Thirsty Thursday, I am somehow always on a constant hunt for something I had in New England that I have trouble finding in the New York area.
This summer, I raved about finally finding Rhode Island brewery Narragansett’s Del’s Shandy at Madison Square Eats after looking for it everywhere the previous summer. I also wrote briefly about finding Cisco Brewers Grey Lady in an incredible Italian place in Morning Side Heights.
So, when I came across Cisco Brewers Pumple Drumkin Spiced Ale on Swine’s menu, I had to order one. The fall beer out of Nantucket, Massachusetts boasts a deliciously spicy flavor and an ABV of six percent. Of all the pumpkin beers out there, Pumple Drumkin probably sits on top of my list, alongside Southern Tier’s Pumking.
So, Swine was a big hit with me for its great vibes, friendly bartenders, and wonderful selection of cocktails and beer. Next time, though, I’ll have to try the wines on tap.