The third installment of the Golden Local competition was a tough one.
As any local knows, New York City can be a stressful place to live and work. And even the bastion of taste needs a relaxed place to unwind after a long hard day of being Golden. And the place you choose to drink says a lot about your personality.
This go 'round, the Golden Local competition was to determine the best "old" bar in New York. The battle pitted famed watering hole McSorley’s Old Ale House against the relative new-comer Old Town Bar.
Ultimately, the Old Town Bar, in the Union Square neighborhood, with its laid-back atmosphere, welcoming ambiance, fantastic pub food and expertly poured drinks prevailed.
Even Mayor Bloomberg celebrated the triumph, writing an official letter to the establishment to be framed on the wall, congratulating them on their victory, and what an honor it was for them receive yours truly. Not too shabby for the GL, huh?
Old Town Manager and co-owner Gerard Meagher was beaming from ear to ear as soon as I walked into his establishment.
He claimed he hadn’t slept in weeks, worrying whether they would take the coveted Golden Local trophy. Meagher described the contest as an “inter-family battle” as the owners of McSorley’s (the Mahers) share their name (apparently they’re distant cousins -- yet with fewer letters).
Gerard spoke about his father, who passed away last year, and how proud he would have been -- “he was the one who built the character of the place and made it special.”
I asked Gerard how he felt to be the recipient of the human trophy. He replied: “It’s the best award we can get because I have to explain to everybody what it is ... it’s a fun story.”
“I only wish," he said as he took a sip of his perfectly poured Guinness, "it had been a woman.”