The Moonlight Mile
200 Franklin St nr India St, Greenpoint
The Place: A laid-back and unpretentious whiskey bar nestled in a residential corner of Greenpoint inhabited by people who probably never leave Greenpoint.
The Time: Wednesday August 3, 6:15pm. Hankering a good cocktail and a change of scenery before treating myself to The Color Purple (HOLY SHIT CYNTHIA ERIVO), I head up to the Moonlight Mile. A peculiar name, but I can get down with weirdos. I really try to spend as little time around Times Square as humanly possible, and Greenpoint is a nice quiet antidote to the tourist mayhem that ensues in midtown.
The Vibe: I’m the only person in the bar when I walk in. Immediately this makes me nervous. But the two bartenders are very friendly and welcoming so I stay. It’s a big open space, with tons of light pouring through the open windows. There’s a lovely cross-breeze happening, which makes me forget I’m indoors. With this breeze and light, it’s just as nice as a rooftop bar, but without all the asshole rooftop bar people. Soon after I get here, it starts to fill up. I kid you not, the bartenders know the names of Every. Single. Person. who walks in this bar. Literally everyone! “Hey Debbie, nice haircut!” “How you doing, Bruce?” “What’ll it be Chris, the usual?” OMG my boyfriend barely notices when I get a haircut, I would LOVE my bartender to compliment my new hairstyle while he makes me “the usual.” Are you fucking kidding, that would be so cool! And what’s more, they all know each other! Everyone either came to the bar alone or with one other person, and yet everyone seems to know everyone else. I’ve determined that Moonlight Mile is the hipster Brooklyn whiskey bar version of Cheers.
The Bartender: A really nice chill guy named Asaf. I don’t catch the other guy’s name, since he was on the other side of the bar. We talk a bit about the industry. He used to work at the Meatball Shop, and he also couldn’t get over the size and color of the grapefruits they got in today. He went to the Panorama music festival with Chris, the guy who was sitting next to me. Now you know basically everything I know about Asaf.
The Drank: The Ned Stark – High West rye, allspice, muddled pear, lemon, habanero syrup, shaken over ice. It’s super refreshing, and I’ve never had pear in a cocktail before so points for creativity. They have a great cocktail list, and an expansive whiskey list, heavy on rye and bourbon. They’ve got a bunch of good beers on tap too. Something for everyone! (Unless you exclusively drink vodka, then go to a vodka bar, you Russian.)
Was I Hit On? No, just had a lovely conversation with Asaf and Chris and Debbie. I ask Bruce how his drink was and he nods so we have a good rapport going. I can’t get any reading done because we're all hanging out and talking. I guess I could extrapolate myself and sit by the window but I'm having fun with these folks. Why ruin a good time by reading a book? How dull.
Should You Drink Here Alone? If you wanna chat and meet some new people, absolutely, especially if you live in Greenpoint. Since I don’t live around here, I do feel a bit out of the loop, but everyone is sociable, and they didn't exclude this Williamsburg girl from their club. If you prefer some quiet time to get work done or because you’re sick of talking to people, maybe pick another spot. But the Moonlight Mile is perfect if great whiskey and good conversation is your jam.