As Metro’s spirits editor, T. Michelle Murphy hits a lot of bars. In this new column, in various states of sobriety, she offers her take on New York City’s finest — and foulest — alcohol-proffering establishments.
Royal Palms Shuffleboard Club
514 Union St., Brooklyn
Every bar should have shuffleboard, or at least something competitive that lets you shit-talk your closest friends.
Neighborhood: Gowanus, Brooklyn
Ambience: (Wednesday, 7 p.m.) Unironic aging hipster hangout meets union hall —where the line blurs between funemployed and retirement. The women's bathroom has amazing flamingo wallpaper, but if you hang out in there too long touching it people are gonna look at you funny (or so we heard, from a friend).
Bartenders: Will served us our drinks, courtside. He also took the time to teach us how to play with our tangs and biscuits, which sounds way filthier right now than it did then.
Cocktails: We were at an event sponsored by Brugal Extra Dry, and we stuck to either classic daiquiris (pictured above) or a specially curated drink called The Royal Palms Shuffle (get the recipe).
Food: We lucked into Big D's Grub Truck; check the website for who's rolling up each night. Dumplings were flavorful but doughy, with sandwiches coming through as the best value. Vegetarian options are available off-menu. We recommend the yucca fries with extra "special sauce" ($4).
Price: ($) Full disclosure: Our drinks were free thanks to the cocktail event we were attending — but, of course, food truck prices cannot be beat. Shuffleboard is $40 per hour, which is so-so for two people goofing around but reasonable for a group of four buckling down for some serious biscuit-tossing (shuffleboard slang that we just made up — no relation to its cookie counterpart, unless you have too many daiquiris).
Specials: Drink specials are available on "league nights," when all 10 courts are reserved (Monday and Thursday, 7 to 10:30). There's drag queen bingo Wednesdays, and that's pretty special, too.
Drunkenness: (+++++) One of those nights you snooze on the train. Maybe all of that intense shuffleboard action wore us out, though, let's go with that.
Best bar in NYC for … a glimpse at your future in South Florida.
To suggest a contender for NYC’s best bar, tweet T. Michelle Murphy: @TMichelleMurphy.