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« Wednesday, July 14th, 2010—Bar 185 | Main | Monday, July 12th, 2010—Bar 183 »

Tuesday, July 13th, 2010—Bar 184

Day 184—Monday, July 12th, 2010

This morning I was happily awakened with the PayPal bell ringing joyfully once again. Darleya who pens the entertaining review blog, Stuffed Ashes sent in ten dollars to buy me a drink. Thanks Darleya! I encourage everyone to check out her blog here: Stuffed Ashes.

Alright, Saturday I went to Knuckles Tiki Bar in Long Island and tonight I thought I’d check out the newest tiki bar in the city, Painkiller. Are you ready to get tikitized? I know Tiki Bar Susie is, let’s go.

There's no glitzy sign hanging outside, just look for the tiki bar emblazoned doors and you're here. And here we are.

Lots of bamboo and a nice bar with some seats available. I'm officially hau`oli!

Co-owner and master bartender Giuseppe expertly crafts the signature drink of the house, The Painkiller. Giuseppe is a third generation bartender and takes pride in his work and cocktails.

The tiki bar is open!

The Painkiller is delicious and a decent reliever of pain as well.

Valentin was on duty as well. He tends bar, is the bar back and does a little of everything here at Painkiller.

Some tiki knick-knacks and bric-a-brac behind the bar.

There's comfortable booths in the back room.

And that's exactly where Jim and Christina were enjoying some tiki cocktails.

Original tiki artwork hangs on the bamboo walls.

A vintage ad for Ballantine Ale with Ernest Hemmingway hangs on the front wall. Ballantine Ale is available at the bar along with Brooklyn Lager and Red Stripe on occasion.

Here's tiki drink number two: the Missionary's Downfall. It was very refreshing and green.

Topless tiki beauties adorn the top of the glass bar.

Chris and Loretta were chilling out at the front of the bar.

Tiki gods line the bamboo walls.

Hello there, tiki god.

Brian lives across the street and is a semi-regular at the bar.

I love the Painkiller logo.

Giusppe and Valentin work together to mix a batch of Island inspired cocktails.

I asked Brian for a potent drink for my last cocktail and he mixed me up a 151 Swizzle that did the trick. It was time to say aloha after this drink.

Giuseppe poured shots of Zaya rum as a parting gift and let me keep the skull shotglass. Thanks for a great night, Giuseppe, cheers and goodnight, everybody.

Being that Manhattan is an Island, you’d think there’d be more tiki bars here. I like tiki bars so the very first bar I hit on this bar crawl was Otto’s Shrunken Head and it was a welcome oasis back in the winter and in the early days of this bar crawl. Well in May a brand new tiki bar opened its doors and the name of this island hideaway is Painkiller. There’s no flashy sign outside, just look for the doors that say, “Tiki Bar” and you’re here. Inside you’ll find a bar covered with tropical beauties and walls that are brick and bamboo. Original tiki art hangs on the wall alongside graffiti tags to remind you that the island you’re drinking on is Manhattan. The front room is narrow and leads to a more spacious backroom with comfortable booths and tiki gods on the walls. The bartenders are friendly and happy to help you with your drink choices.

And the drinks are crafted with care here. Co-owners Giuseppe Gonzalez and Richard Boccato are believers in quality cocktails and all the juices are squeezed fresh daily and the syrups and creams are homemade. Giuseppe was manning the bar the night I was there and laughingly told me, “If you’re not using fresh juices, you’re an asshole.”

All the drinks are carefully concocted, Guiseppe was on duty the night I was there and he looked a little like a mad scientist behind the bar carefully pouring jiggers and shots into glasses of chopped ice and meticulously topping them off with garnishes, shavings and umbrellas. It’s a show unto itself just watching the man at work. There’s a large variety of drinks including frozen concoctions, Maii Tais, Swizzles, Daiquiris and Zombie and Scorpion Punch Bowls. There’s no food, but rumors of free hot dogs in the future loom largely.

Stop by Painkiller for a little Island relaxation on the island of Manhattan. Okole maluna and Mahalo nui.

49 Essex St. (between Grand & Hester Sts.)

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Reader Comments (26)

"If you're not using fresh juices, you're an asshole." Ha Ha Ha! That's an excellent quote and more than reason enough for me to visit your bar, Giuseppe! I love this place! But when I go, I'm going to have to skip the 151 Swizzle, or the Tiki God of Barfing will pay me a visit.

July 13, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterBiff

Painkiller is one of my specialty drinks I make with Pusser's navy rum, cream of coconut, pineapple juice and orange juice. This is a drink originally from St John's VI, and the key ingredient is fresh ground nutmeg on top, its awesome. That picture of Hemingway on the wall was from his terrace at the Finca Vigia, his home outside Havana, circa 1952. Shortly after that picture he took off with his wife to Africa and survived two plane crashes within 24 hours of each other (1954), he was never the same again.

July 13, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAl

Love it.
you know I am a sucker for tiki bars and this one just rules!
I love the old Ballentine ad. I think i still have a few old Ballentine ad's but not that one:(
and Biff is so right on. Guiseppe and his fresh juice is the perfect reason to visit..

July 13, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterGidget

Great Tiki Bar!
When I spoke to you briefly yesterday, it sounded like you were ready for a few quality cocktails.
Glad you got them!
To Fresh Juices!

July 13, 2010 | Unregistered Commenter"Boris"

To Fresh Juices!

July 13, 2010 | Registered Commenter365 Beers

Dammit Marty, now you've got me all thirsty for something refreshing and exotic, a drink with little umbrellas and pagan Gods sticking out of it. can't remember the last time I had one of those! At least you get plenty of vitamin C with drinks like that to help with the hangover the next day!

July 13, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJaws the Cabbie

Thanks for the shout out Marty!
Also, those Tiki drinks look sooooooo amazing! You'd think you were in the South somewhere and not in the city. That green one looks really intriguing.
Giuseppe looks like he likes to have fun :)

July 13, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterDarleya

Oh, I like it. It almost seems like your on an Island VACATION in that bar!

July 13, 2010 | Unregistered Commentermeleah rebeccah

@Darleya: Happy to do it and thanks again for the generous donation!

July 13, 2010 | Registered Commenter365 Beers

After the 151 Swizzle I would see Mr. Roarke and would hear Tattoo screaming while rings the bells "Da plane, da plane".
Great bar, a love it. Awsome cocktails, and the Missionary's Downfall looks delicious!
To fresh juices!

July 13, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterLuc Ramone

To Tattoo and to Fresh Juices!

July 13, 2010 | Registered Commenter365 Beers

To Ricardo Montalban and fine Corinthian leather!

July 13, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterBiff

To Ricardo Montalban and fine Corinthian leather! (You still gots it, Bifferoonie!)

July 13, 2010 | Registered Commenter365 Beers

@Al...interesting on the Hemingway info....

July 13, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterfitzy

@Al....its uncanny, 5min after my last post over the news came the funeral of Ken Talbot (a Aussie mining magnate) & 5 of his staff & board members who were killed in a plane crash last week over the Cameroon/Congo boarder....No Hemingway luck for these poor buggers.....give me summer in Europe or Alaska, they can keep Africa!!

July 13, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterfitzy

To fresh juices and non-assholes! Valentin looks like he could cause some pain. Really? No boob comments? I'm a little disappointed.

July 13, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterkari

I love Tiki bars and this one looks great. Nice drinks for the summer. Otto's was cool too (and your first stop) as was Knuckles backyard tiki bar! Hey where's Tiki Bar Susie?

July 13, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterBarfly

Okay, everybody, looks like kari issued a challenge, but I've got nothin'. (Long night at work!) Come on everyone, where's the boob jokes, oh, "Boris", Biff, Titzy...I mean Fitzy, there's one kari!

July 13, 2010 | Registered Commenter365 Beers

@Marty, smartarse!!!....gotta pay it though.....

July 13, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterfitzy

Boy, Ernest Hemingway sure did have a nice rack! Ta-da!

July 14, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterBiff

@Titzi...I mean Fitzi, ha ha ha! I think we should rechristen you Titzi!

@Biff: You still gots it Bifferoonie!

July 14, 2010 | Registered Commenter365 Beers

This Place Looks Great .
To bad you don't have a close up shot of the scull shot glass , would like to see it , can you bring it to work ?
If I drank those drinks that you had , I would be talking in tongue , & would of waken The Tiki Gods .

July 14, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJHwang

drinks really look interesting and intoxicating...much like the recipes on painkiller's site look interesting and intoxicating...nice stop...KOC


July 14, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterraginrr

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