Selected Events (10/19) + Today’s Featured Pub (Upper WestSide)

Today’s SWEET 6 > MONDAY / OCT. 19, 2015

“We search the internet everyday looking for the very best of What’s Happening, primarily on Manhattan’s WestSide, so that you don’t have to.” We make it as easy as 1-2-3.
(click on links for complete event info.)

Music, Dance, Performing Arts
The Bessie Awards
Apollo Theater, 253 West 125th St./ 7:30PM, $10
“Named for the influential choreography teacher Bessie Schoenberg, the Bessies, or the New York Dance and Performance Awards, have evolved into a boisterous ceremony honoring a wide cross-section of talent. This year’s odd-couple hosts are the former New York City Ballet principal Jock Soto and the performance artist Carmelita Tropicana; the honorees include the postmodern trailblazer Steve Paxton, who will receive the award for Lifetime Achievement in Dance. His partner in art and life, Lisa Nelson, will perform, as will the electric Camille A. Brown and this year’s Outstanding Emerging Choreographer, Storyboard P.” (Burke-NYT)

“Tannhäuser” / Metropolitan Opera
Metropolitan Opera House, Lincoln Center / 7PM, $
“With its seamless transitions, voluptuous, boundary-pushing approach to harmonies, and grand vocal writing, “Tannhäuser” is a portrait of Wagner the composer entering mid-career. The score’s superhuman demands should be secure in the hands of the Met’s topnotch cast, including Johan Botha, Eva-Maria Westbroek, Michelle DeYoung, and the always excellent Peter Mattei, who, as Wolfram, delivers one of the opera’s loveliest moments, the “Hymn to the Evening Star”; James Levine—having withdrawn from the new production of “Lulu”—is slated to conduct.” (Tommasini-NYT)

One for All
Smoke Jazz Club, 2751 Broadway, at 106th St./ 7PM +9PM, $38
“Drawing partly from its most recent studio album, “Incorrigible,” this hard-bop collective benefits greatly from the lean proficiency of its roster: Jim Rotondi on trumpet, Eric Alexander on tenor saxophone, Steve Davis on trombone, David Hazeltine on piano, John Webber on bass and Joe Farnsworth on drums.” (Chinen-NYT)

Jim Caruso’s Cast Party (Cabaret)
Birdland, 315 West 44th St. (btw 8/9 ave) / 9:30PM, $25
the witty host attracts broadway stars on their night off, along with up and comers.
The Vanguard Jazz Orchestra
Village Vanguard, 178 7th Ave. South (btw W11th/Perry St.) / 8:30Pm +10:30PM, $30
world class big band with 16 members on that small stage, a monday night institution.

Smart Stuff / Other
(Lectures, Discussions, Book Talks, Literary Readings, Classes, Food & Drink, Other)
Moon Country: The Songs of Johnny Mercer’s South
New York Public Library for the Performing Arts, Dorothy and Lewis B. Cullman Center, Bruno Walter Auditorium / 6PM, FREE
“Cabaret artist Evan Stern teams up with the incomparable Steve Ross in this spirited and heartfelt celebration of Johnny Mercer’s roots. Featuring classics like Skylark, Lazybones and Blues In The Night, this show explores how the American South is represented throughout Mercer’s songbook, and retraces the many times he returned to the landscape of his youth as a well of inspiration throughout his long and storied career.”

Archtober (Oct. 01-31)
This month offers a prime opportunity to honor the beauty of the NYCity skyline with Archtober, a festival of tours, talks and exhibitions exploring the city’s architecture. The festival showcases a different building each day.
Today’s Building of the Day:
Theatre for a New Audience at Polonsky Shakespeare Center, 262 Ashland Place
(Tour Time: 12PM)
Theatre for a New Audience (TFANA) is a critically-acclaimed theater company that had been without its own home for over thirty years. The architecture of TFANA’s new home at Polonsky Shakespeare Center extemporizes that something special has come to the emerging Brooklyn Cultural District. It is the first new ground-up building for the arts to break ground in the District and helps contribute to the critical mass needed to sustain a healthy arts community in Downtown Brooklyn.
For all other events today check out the calendar at

Bonus – Jazz Picks:
Many consider NYCity the Jazz capital of the world. Here are my favorite Jazz clubs, all on Manhattan’s WestSide. Check out who is playing tonight:
Greenwich Village:
Village Vanguard – 178 7th Ave. South — / 212-255-4037
Blue Note – 131 W3rd St. nr 6th ave. — / 212-475-8592
55 Bar – 55 Christopher St. nr 7th ave.S. — / 212-929-9883
Outside Greenwich Village:
Dizzy’s Club – Broadway @ 60th St. — / 212-258-9595
Birdland – 315 W44th St.(btw 8/9ave) — / 212-581-3080
Smoke Jazz Club – 2751 Broadway nr.106th St. — / 212-864-6662
Special Mention:
Caffe Vivaldi – 32 Jones St. nr Bleecker St. — / 212-691-7538
a classic, old jazz club in the Village, Caffe V often surprises with a wonderfully eclectic lineup. It’s my favorite spot for an evening of listening enjoyment and discovery.

♦ Before making final plans, we suggest you call the venue to confirm ticket availability, dates and times, as schedules are subject to change.
♦ NYCity, with a population of  8.5 million, had a record 56 million visitors last year and is TripAdvisor’s Traveler’s Choice Top U.S. Destination for 2015.  Quality shows draw crowds. Try to reserve seats in advance, even if just on day of performance.

A PremierPub / Upper West Side

Dinosaur Bar-B-Que / 700 W125th St. @ 12th ave.

Walk only five minutes from the 125th St. station on the #1 line to find this authentic honky-tonk barbecue joint. Some folks think Dinosaur is just a place to eat ribs. Au contraire. With 24 carefully selected taps, this is a place to drink beer, and eat ribs.

HarlHostStandNo food goes better with American craft ales than American barbecue. Dinosaur may be the best combo of good beer drinking and hearty eating in town, which makes the trip uptown to West Harlem totally worthwhile.

This second incarnation of Dinosaur in Harlem is in a two story, old brick warehouse near the Hudson River. Don’t let that run down exterior fool you. Inside it’s a large space with huge, rough wooden columns and unfinished wooden floors and brick walls – just right for a bbq joint. As soon as you open the front door you are hit with that tantalizing aroma of barbecue coming from the large open kitchen. Reminds me of those great rib joints I frequented when stationed in North Carolina all those years ago. If your stomach wasn’t grumbling before, it is now.

Head to the bar, sit down and try to decide on a beer. It’s not an easy decision – a good problem to have. This is a pretty damn good beer list to choose from, one that most beer bars should be jealous of. I love that they feature NY craft beers. You may want to try the four beer sampler, which is always fun, and in this place may be necessary.

The blues music playing in the background will get you in the mood for their North Carolina style barbecue, and even when it’s a full house your order shouldn’t take too long (assuming you snagged a table). The food is all slow smoked, so it’s already mostly done and ready to go. I always start with an order of their giant, spice rubbed wings, so good they may make you give up Buffalo wings.

Unfortunately, a place this good does not fly under the radar. There can be some long waits for a table at dinnertime. So you need a strategy – avoid prime time, and try not to arrive with your entire posse, which will limit your seating options.

A seat at the bar, a small table in the bar area, or in the summer, an outside table underneath what’s left of the elevated West Side Highway, all may open before a table inside the main dining room. Otherwise, try Dinosaur for lunch, or come very late for dinner, maybe after a show at the nearby Cotton Club nightclub.

Phone #: 212-694-1777
Hours: Mo-Th 11:30am-11:00pm; Fr-Sa 11:30am-12:00am;
Su 12:00pm-10:00pm
Happy Hour: 4-7pm every day; $1 off all drinks
Music: Fri / Sat 10:30pm
Subway: #1 to 125th St.
Walk 2 blk W on 125th St. to Dinosaur Bar-B-Q,
just past the elevated highway.

“Pub” is used in it’s broadest sense – bars, bar/restaurants, jazz clubs, wine bars, tapas bars, craft beer bars, dive bars, cocktail lounges, and of course, pubs – just about anyplace you can get a drink without a cover charge (except for certain jazz clubs).
If you have a fave premier pub or good eating place on Manhattan’s WestSide let us all know about it – leave a comment.
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