One thing I’ve learned about blogging is that you can’t get too wrapped up in your plans. Plans change. Sometimes things get in the way of plans. Sometimes better things come along. You have to be flexible.
Last weekend, my daughter invited me to spend a day with her in New York. Monday was quickly switched from a same-old-same-old day at the office to a train ride, some shopping, some walking and a couple hours at one of my favorite watering holes, The Molly Wee Pub.
I discovered The Molly Wee in the mid-90s. I was attending a conference at the Javits Center and I wanted something better for lunch than fast food. I enjoyed the experience so much that I went back for dinner. I have been going there ever since. If I am in New York (and in control of the agenda) as much as one day, I will visit the Molly Wee.
The Molly Wee is small by restaurant standards but it’s a good sized pub. When the Rangers are playing hockey, or Ireland is playing soccer, it’s standing room only and you can’t hear yourself think. During more quiet times, the bartender will engage you in conversation and joke with you, but he/she won’t pressure you to buy another round, upsell you on brand/menu items or pressure you to hit the road after that last sip. I’ve left cash on the bar while using the restroom, and while I would never go so far as to recommend the practice, I’ve left my laptop bag and luggage at the bar while taking the same trip.
Early in this century, I asked the bartender if I could take some pictures inside the bar. I explained that we have always had Irish Setters and that one was named Reilly (the Reilly family owns the Molly Wee) and that one was named Mollie. He gave me permission and a free beer. I have gone back to the Molly Wee after not having been there in six or more months, and the bartender has said “what brings you down from Connecticut today?”
Once when my daughter was in her teens and we were visiting New York, she said “I can’t wait until I’m old enough to go to the Molly Wee with you and have a beer.” I was pretty sure that day would never come. She’s been going to the pub with me for almost 10 years now. Several years ago, when she took my wife to New York for the day, she also took her to the Molly Wee. When she invited me to New York this time, I’m sure she knew that I needed a picture of the door.
My favorite Molly Wee experience was when my daughter Faith and I joined Brad Lewis there for lunch. Brad had fries with his meal. Faith had fries with her salad. I had Shepherd’s Pie which is served with two large piles of creamy whipped potatoes instead of the potato crust. I hadn’t touched one pile of potatoes when Brad started dipping his fries in it. Faith soon joined him and now, dipping fries in mashed potatoes is a thing.
The most memorable Molly Wee moment was when Faith and I were drinking and lost track of time (it’s a complicated story I will share at some point). Anyway, we tossed some money on the bar and ran the one block to Penn Station only to just barely miss our train. We sulked back to the Molly Wee and reclaimed our stools. The bartended took one look at us and set us up with two pints, on the house.
The main door was propped open, and the interior door is partially masked by a sign, but I think the pictures will give you an idea of what it’s like to visit.
Like every other Thursday, this post is part of Norm Frampton’s Thursday Doors series. It’s fun and easy to join in.