Darlings is the only bar in Bushwick with a taxidermied fox overlooking its patrons—and you can trust it will be airing every Pats game from here on out!
The new spot is located at 242 Himrod St., just off of the Knickerbocker Avenue stop on the M train, and as of today, it’s open daily from noon until 4 a.m.
Darlings shares a wall with Twin Suns Deli, another one of Masback’s darlings. Patrons don’t even need to walk next door to order a sandwich to pair with their suds: located behind the bar is a secret sandwich drawer (ooh la la) where the bartender can place and receive sandwich orders from Twin Suns. Tack on the house’s $2 Narragansett deal accompanying the sandwich, and you’ve got yourself a proper New England dinner, Bushwick!
Montana’s Trailhouse has an entrance to another room hidden behind a library shelf. “I guess the secret door is my trademark now,” Masback jokes.
Heanue, who also tended bar over at Montana’s Trailhouse, is well-versed in mixology, but proudly designates Darlings as something completely different from a craft cocktail establishment. “This is a beer and shot place,” he declares. “Jagermeister on draft. That’s our cocktail list!”
The menu centers on beers from New England breweries like Smuttynose, Allagash, and the Maine Beer Company, and Heanue will regularly rotate out two of the drafts with lesser known New England craft beers. On opening night, they’ll be pouring pints from Mystic Brewery in Chelsea, Massachusetts and from Kent Falls Brewing Company in Kent, Connecticut.
Drafts are very reasonably priced. Most are $6, with a shorter pour (11.2 ounces) of Stella in its signature glass at $5. Cans start at $3, for a 12-ounce Narragansett.
Boston native Heanue tells Bushwick Daily: “I wanted to open a sports bar, but not an obnoxious one.”
Accompanying the New England themed decor is an astonishing amount of wood, all of which was restored. The walls are wood-paneled, the shelving behind the bar was once a floor in a house upstate, and the beautiful wooden bar was milled from the roof of an old water tower in Brooklyn (the Darlings team got it from a man who had had torn it off and laid it out on his lawn, asking $50 for somebody to take off his hands). Heanue’s favorite piece is a purple heart wood table, which, aside from having been oiled, is unstained.
New England relics and family heirlooms from the owners’ personal collections give Darlings a homey atmosphere you might associate with your grandparent’s basement. There’s a clock to the left of the bar with 12 fives on it (get it?)—that piece quite literally used to hang in Heanue’s grandmother’s basement!
Heanue tells Bushwick Daily that reactions to the new venture have so far been polarized among those who discover that Darlings is a Patriot bar located in a sea of Jets and Giants fans. “[one reaction is], “Yeah! A Pat’s bar!,’ and the other one is ‘You’ve got some serious balls opening up a Boston bar.’”
Darlings aims to be a comfortable place—a place to watch the game where you’ll want to stick around even when the game is over, and a reprieve from utilitarian sports bars which replace ambience with too many flat screens.
Darlings has depth, just like friends who are more than just great drinking companions. Since there’s nothing quite like indulging in good beer in the company of good friends, take a seat over at Darlings and have a drink or two with your buds, Bushwick!