« Blooper Reel | Main | Cash Mob At Odessa »

Keens Steakhouse Bar

When I did my Mad Men Taven Tour, one of the stops was Keens Steakhouse Bar and I found out that they serve up free appetizers every day around five in the afternoon. Today Swedish meatballs are on the menu, so that’s today’s Free Food Friday destination!

We're going early, it's just four in the afternoon, this place really packs them in at happy hour and I want to secure a spot at the bar before the crowd gets there!

Here we are at Keens Steakhouse Bar. Keens has been on the block since 1885. Today it's the lone survivor of the Herald Square Theater District. Let's go inside and grab a seat at the bar.

Wow, even at four in the afternoon, the bar is almost full. I see one empty stool and I'm going to go snag it before someone else does!

Okay, I've secured my spot at the bar and friendly bartender Carl serves up an ice cold beer. We're off to a nice start!

These two fellows were sitting next to me and were curious about the TMW blog. I told them about the Mad Men Tavern Tour and we had a nice conversation about classic New York bars. That's one of the things I love about this blog, the interesting people you get to meet! That's Kevin on the left and Marty on the right. Always nice to meet another Marty!

Here's Miss Keens, who looks down at the bar in all her naked glory.

A long shot of the classic wooden bar in Keens.

There's a long wooden railing opposite the bar. It won't be empty long, so I thought I'd get a shot of it before the crowd gets here.

A ceiling fan hangs from the tin rood, always the sign of a great, old bar.

This guy is overhead and stashed in a corner looking down. He kind of freaks me out.

I love all the vintage black and white framed photos on the wooden walls in here.

Here's an employee outing from way back when it was called Keens Chop House.

Check out the trivia board. The answer to the first question is, White Out and the answer to the bottom was is Sylvester Stallone. Anybody know  the Frankenstein answer?

Okay, the crowd I mentioned earlier has arrived. Glad I got my spot at the bar. Now it's just a matter of time before the Swedish Meatballs are brought out.

Carl's busy behind the bar taking drink orders.


And of course there's someone who can't stop staring at his texting device.

And here they are, the aforementioned Swedish Meatballs. i got a full boat and they're delicious! Probably the best free happy hour food I've had so far. I was offered another boat, but this one filled me up.

My work here is done!

And as I leave, night has fallen on Herald Square. Have I ever mentioned I love it when that happens?

Keens Steakhouse
72 W. 36th St. (@Sixth Ave.)

Further Reading: New York Magazine, New York Times and Eater NY.

I need a second skin,
Something to hold me tough.

Surprise link, click on it...I dare you!

Reader Comments (29)

I though I saw Frau Blucher in the crowd.

March 9, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterTerry

Looks like you had a peachy keen time (couldn't resist).

The meatballs and olves are nice touches, seperately of course. Wonder if anyone tries to sneak in bread and clandestinely attempts to make a sandwich?

March 9, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDaveW

Hey Marty, Great Bar, the Swedish Meatballs look great. You should bring tupperware next time & take seconds for Breakfast with your morning cup of Beer,
I love the Nude painting over the bar. I have a large Nude similar to that one that I painted that I've been trying to sell. Maybe I should try a new Bar.
James Whale directed the original (1931) Boris Karloff version of Frankenstein & the New York Dolls wrote a song about it. Bela Lugosi was originally set to star as the monster, but he looked terrible in the make-up.
My brother & I were Famous Monsters of Filmland magazine freaks when we were younger.

March 9, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDanny the Freelancer

@Terry: Ha ha ha! I thought I heard some upset horses out there!

@DaveW: Nice Keens pun there! I actually thought to myself last night, I wish they put out a little bread with these! Although the boast did fill me up!

@Danny the Freelancer: You should try and sell the painting to a bar, I'll spread the word in my travels. Nice work answering the trivia question! Which New York Doll's song is that? Oh and I'll be mailing your package this weekend! The monkey will be yours soon!

March 9, 2012 | Registered CommenterTripping With Marty

Nice to see that you got to eat Swedish meatballs without having to buy the furniture you sat in.
Also, according to Bauhaus, Bela Lugosi is dead. Pull the string!

March 9, 2012 | Unregistered Commentercsp

Harald Square? :)@csp-Ed Wood was a god! Thanks

March 9, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDuncester

HA didn't i just write about James Whale a few weeks ago and there he is one of your questions!
small world in which all our circles are connected whether we like it or not!
I forgot that is was Sly stone Jack mugged..
I try to not think of bad men Jack played HA... being the man my son is named after and all....
OK that's a lie.. my kids name was pretty much sealed when I saw "Glen Garry Glen Ross"
might explain my sons language though !
I was gonna have a grilled cheese for lunch.. screw that I want meatballs now!

March 9, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterGidget

Marty, the Dolls song was actually called Frankenstein, song number 5. , right after Lonely Planet Boy on the New York Doll's debut album. Produced by Todd Rundgren
Love Ed Wood with Jonny Depp, the best scene in the movie is when Martin Landau is fighting the octopus in the kiddie pool, I almost pissed myself laughing.

March 9, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterdanny the freelancer

@csp: I've never been to IKEA, I heard they charge for their Swedish Meatballs! Great clip from Ed Wood, one of my favorite movies!

@Duncseter: That's the second time I fucked the name up, esquared caught it first and I still didn't get it right! Thanks for the typo catch, it's corrected now!

@Gidget: That's right, yes we are all connected in the blogosphere! And Glen Garry Glen Ross is one of the great movies of all time and lots of cursing in it too. Check out the obscenity count!

@danny the freelancer: I forgot all about that song, going to queue it up now! I loved that scene in Ed Wood too, great movie!

March 9, 2012 | Registered CommenterTripping With Marty

Great entry, I was really jerking off in excitement, which is hard to do seeing as how I suffer from erectile dysfunction and recently ran out of Viagra that I illegally ordered online.

March 9, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAl Czervik

@Marty, it’s like Craig versus Greg. Once I mix up those names, I fuck em up forever.

March 9, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDuncester

If you only got the Swedish Meatballs (for free) that looked more than enough.

March 9, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMykola Mick Dementiuk

@Al Czervik: Your comment brings a new level to T.M.I!

@Duncester: I hear you, that's one of the good things about blogs as opposed to print, you can go back and fix typos! Thanks again for the catch!

@Mykola Mick Dementiuk: More than enough for sure, great happy hour food at Keen's!

March 9, 2012 | Registered CommenterTripping With Marty

The very first Frankenstien movie was one of the first motion pictures ever made and shot in 1910 and produced at Edison Studios by Thomas Edison.

March 9, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJaws the Cabbie

P.S....it was fucking awful, kinda funny I suppose...

March 9, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJaws the Cabbie

Isn't writing "Sylvester Stallone" and "meatball" in the same post redundant?

March 9, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterBiff

Hey Jaws, While were on the Classic Horror Movie subject, did you know that when they filmed the 1932 version of Dracula with Bela Lugosi , they simultaneously filmed Dracula in Spanish on the same set at night. Carlos Villarias & Lupita Tovar Starred in the Spanish version. I have it on the B side of the Dracula DVD.

March 9, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterdanny the freelancer

@Jaws: Thanks for chiming in with the answer and your review! "it was fucking awful" Better than any Roger Ebert review! Succinct and to the point!

@Biff: "Isn't writing "Sylvester Stallone" and "meatball" in the same post redundant?" Ha ha ha! You still gots it, Bifferoonie!

March 9, 2012 | Registered CommenterTripping With Marty

The Gits? My favorite Steakhouse? This is a post after my own heart.

Sounds like a perfect night!!!! Mmm those meatballs look divine!!

March 9, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLindsay

Ai ai! Now that are Swedish Meatballs! Ikea eat your heart out lol and they are even free! Here in Holland the only Swedish Meatballs we can get are from Ikea itself and they look like they got them from the Swedish Dog castrationcentre...brrr

March 9, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterRuben Dutch

@Danny the Frelancer; "Escuche Harker ... hijos de la noche! ¿Qué música hacen ..."

March 9, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJaws the Cabbie

Speaking of meatballs!

March 9, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSpike

@Lindsay: Nothing's better than a night at Keen's with a side of The Gits, a great band championed by Joan Jett, no less!

@Ruben Dutch: I've never had an IKEA meatball and after you dog castration line, I never will!

@Spike: Ha ha ha! Perfect! Thanks for the linkage!

March 9, 2012 | Registered CommenterTripping With Marty

I'm housebound so this post is extra good.... but damn, I missed out on another monkey!

March 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterGreen Monkey

@Green Monkey: Enjoy your pain pills and get better as soon as you can! Sorry you missed this monkey, but there will be more in the future!

March 10, 2012 | Registered CommenterTripping With Marty

Wooden bar, tin ceiling, nude painting, free food, not sure what else you could ask for! Maybe free beer...

March 11, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterkari

@kari: Free beer, definitely would've made it a perfect night out!

March 11, 2012 | Registered CommenterTripping With Marty

We tried to get (not Swedish or free, though) meatballs last night at a bar we went to for my friend's Judas Queen birthday party, but they were out :( I think we're going to go back today to try again, though. I should try to remember to take some pictures. The venue, The Sunset Tavern is a cool looking place.

March 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterIsabella

@Isabella: Good luck with the Swedish meatball hunt! If you get a picture, send me a copy and I'll post it!

March 11, 2012 | Registered CommenterTripping With Marty

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.

My response is on my own website »
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>