There are very few places more comfy than a friendly pub. And on a cool Autumn afternoon with the doors flung open, we had high hopes for The Douglass (149 4th Avenue at Douglass Street), a newly-opened pub which also has a proper menu.
Co-owners Pete Cavanaugh and Bryan Kuhn started serving up food and drink just a few weeks back after only two months of renovation. In restaurant parlance, that’s a record time turnaround.
The Australian pub Sheep Station closed up at the end of July, and the new owners have done a sharp job re-working the space to create an atmosphere that’s comfortable without being cluttered.
Our timing was right, as happy hour drinks were flowing as they will do on Mondays-Thursday between 4pm-7pm.
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The drinks menu is certainly the featured element of the pub, with a full list of beer, wine, and cocktails to suit just about anyone. And it’s a proper pub with a nice mahogany bar — so simply stopping in for just a drink is encouraged.
The tasty Douglass House Wheat Beer ($5 at Happy Hour) was light enough for a late afternoon sip. My dining partner enjoyed her glass of Côtes du Rhône ($6).
The menu is a take on your “standard” pub fare with a bit more flare. You’ll find onion rings, wings, quesadillas, salads, burgers (yes, a veggie burger as well), and even a “Douglass Breakfast” ($13) which is a plate of Irish sausage, bacon, eggs, and fries.
We split a starter and main, which together were filling enough to be a meal. The chicken tacos ($8, or $10 if you did shrimp) were soft and flavorful. The tacos weren’t weighed down with too much, so you could actually eat them with your hands. They were a good start.
My dining partner suggested the Fish n’ Chips ($15) which I usually shy away from because of the dish being too heavy. However, this wasn’t the case. The Atlantic Cod was fluffy — and the batter was not too greasy at all. We forgot to add vinegar, so don’t make that mistake when you go in.
The team is putting the finishing touches on the back room, which was always my favorite part of Sheep Station. It’s an intimate alternative to the front room — good for a small group having a nightcap.
Co-owner Pete Cavanaugh knows what he’s doing. While he’s been in real estate for the last eight years, he previously owned the Dorian Gray Tap and Grill in the West Village, as well as some other drinking/food venues in Manhattan.
The Douglass also is serving brunch on the weekends beginning at 11am on Saturdays and Sundays.
How best to describe this new venue? It’s that comfortable item of clothing you wear — be it a pair of jeans or the sweater you’ve missed over the last six months. Nothing too flashy or expensive — just plain comfortable.
The Dining Rundown: The Douglass
Where: 149 4th Avenue at Douglass Street
Hours: Mondays-Thursdays, 4pm-12am (kitchen until 10pm); Fridays, 2pm-2am (kitchen until 10pm); Saturdays, 11am-2pm (kitchen until 11pm); Sundays, 11am-12am (kitchen until 10pm). Brunch served on weekends beginning at 11am.
Kid Friendly? Perfectly fine for brunch or mid-afternoon lunch.