Walk down any street in New York City and you’re guaranteed to pass a number of bars including dive venues, speakeasies and after work hot spots. While certain watering holes come and go, a select few venues pass the test of time (and ever increasing rent prices) to cement their presence on the city streets.
One such historic watering hole is P.J. Clarke
’s on the Upper East Side of Manhattan. Through the ages, influential individuals like Frank Sinatra, Nat King Cole, Buddy Holly, F. Scott Fitzgerald, and Jackie O. have walked through the doors, grown to love the venue, and expressed their adoration for the establishment.
If the records speak the truth, Steven A. Walker took control of the location in 1884, but it was an Irish immigrant named Patrick J. Clarke who gave the bar its name. A man named Mr. Duneen owned a saloon on the corner of 55th and Third Avenue, and employed a man named Patrick who would go on to eventually take over the location from him, rename it and introduce Manhattan society to P.J. Clarke’s. From there, 915 Third Avenue became an institution of delicious burgers and beer, celebrated by many and revered by all.
Come for the burgers, stay for the stories and drink in the history. Order a Gin Rickey like Fitzgerald, a scotch like Humphrey Bogart, or a bourbon and water like Sinatra – relishing in the fact that one New York City legend has stayed true to its beginnings.