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What’s the Big Brew-Ha-Ha?


WoHo’s Houston Street becoming new pub-hub with Houston Hall comin’ round the bend.

The photo here doesn’t do it justice, as it’s behind-the-times and our Blackberry camera is in repair). But quietly through the fall we’ve been watching the rise of one super-cool-looking, tres-antiquated mead emporium called Houston Hall, between Seventh and Sixth avenues on New York’s heavy-traffic Holland Tunnel go-to, Houston Street (pronounced, dear reader, “House-ton).

Little is known about its makers, but the structure looks to be an historic warehouse or stable of some sort from ye olden time, and whoever is doing the architectural design is keeping it very ye olde-looking, indeed. Bare and sawdusty. Said to be the mastermind of the less-than-amazing Heartland Brewery outposts–no confirmation on this–the space is cavernous, 5,000 square feet, with high ceilings, cement floors, a room-long bar, and seating for about 170 Jethro Tull-looking minstrels in the gallery.

We don’t care a whit if it draws the Upper West Side and post-work Wall Street set–as its wildly popular gastro-pub neighbor, The Brooklyneer, has been doing for several years now. (We still go.) Across from Film Forum, with a back entrance on Downing Street–right next to another of our fave places, the sublime Mexican cantina La Camelia–Houston House is a rare example of somebody respecting the Manhattan of a diamond-in-the-rough golden era. Check out the façade and awnings if you’re coming out of Film Forum. There’s nothing “faux” about the exterior or interior, both of which appear like they could have been in “Gangs of New York” or Luc Sante’s “Low Life.”

We’ll keep you abreast, New Yorkers and savvy out-of-towners, and will be one of the first to hitch our pony to this watering hole with gusto.