NYC Events,”Only the Best” (05/18) + Today’s Featured Pub (WestVillage)

“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.

For future NYC Events, better check the tab above: NYC Events-MAY”
It’s the most comprehensive list of top events this month that you will find anywhere.
Carefully curated from “Only the Best” NYC event info on the the web, it’s a simply superb resource that will help you plan your NYC visit all over town, all through the month.

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Have time for only one NYC Event today? Do this:

SEAN JONES QUINTET (May 18-20)
at Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola / 7:30 and 9:30PM, $40
“Intrepid and smoky toned and nearly always convincing, Mr. Jones held the first trumpet chair in the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra for many years. Now he leads his own small ensembles and is preparing to begin his first year as head of the Peabody Institute’s jazz program. This weekend Mr. Jones returns to Columbus Circle for three nights in a stellar quintet with the alto saxophonist Brian Hogans, the pianist Orrin Evans, the bassist Luques Curtis and the drummer Mark Whitfield Jr.” (NYT-GIOVANNI RUSSONELLO)

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6 OTHER TOP NYC EVENTS TODAY (see below for full listing)
>> I LOVE SOCA 10TH ANNIVERSARY
>>AMERICAN BALLET THEATER
>> SAMUEL TORRES
>> Flamenco Vivo Carlota Santana 
>>Bill Charlap
>>Taste of the Upper West Side
Continuing Events
>> Jerome Robbins Centennial
>> Mad. Sq. Eats
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Music, Dance, Performing Arts

I LOVE SOCA 10TH ANNIVERSARY
at Manhattan Center Hammerstein Ballroom / 9PM, $
“Trinidad’s legendary Carnival is long over, but that just means there are more soca artists bringing their talents to New York for the extended prelude to the city’s own fete, the West Indian American Day Parade, held annually on Labor Day. Machel Montano, who heads up this soca celebration, is currently the genre’s biggest star worldwide, and yet that title has earned him only nominal crossover success (he has worked with Major Lazer). If you check out this show, which also features Rupee, Voice and Iwer George, you just might come to believe that this bright, relentlessly high-energy music deserves a bigger following stateside — just make sure you’re wearing your dancing shoes.” (NYT-NATALIE WEINER)

AMERICAN BALLET THEATER (Thru July 7)
at the Metropolitan Opera House / 7:30PM, $22+
“This weekend, the company wraps up its performances of “Giselle,” the first full-length ballet of the season. On Monday night, the spring gala unveils a pièce d’occasion by the tap dancer and choreographer Michelle Dorrance. Set to recorded music by the Brooklyn acoustic ensemble Dawn of Midi, it features 15 dancers. The evening also includes excerpts from Alexei Ratmansky’s “Harlequinade,” with Isabella Boylston as Columbine and James Whiteside as Harlequin. The week continues with a new program pairing Wayne McGregor’s “AfteRite” — his premiere set to Stravinsky’s “The Rite of Spring” — and Mr. Ratmansky’s “Firebird.” (NYT)

SAMUEL TORRES
City College, Aaron Davis Hall / 7:30PM, $
Mr. Torres, a percussionist from Bogotá, Colombia, is deeply experienced in Latin pop and jazz. He’s performed with Arturo Sandoval, Paquito D’Rivera and Shakira, among a long list of others. He also makes his own music — a broadly accessible composite of South American and Caribbean traditions. He’s about to release a new album, “Alegría,” featuring his Super Band; that 10-piece group plays here in celebration of the album’s release.” (NYT-GIOVANNI RUSSONELLO)

Elsewhere, saw them Wednesday night and for fans of Flamenco this is worth the detour:

Flamenco Vivo Carlota Santana (May 15-20)
BAM Fisher / 7:30PM, $25+
“This U.S.-based Spanish dance troupe celebrates its 35th anniversary with new dances by Belén Maya — including Mujeres Valientes, for six dancers, which represents Latin American women (Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, Manuela Saénz) who have challenged authorities and fought against ignorance and injustice. Gaspar Rodriguez’s score for five musicians will be performed live. The program, enacted by a cast of eight dancers and five musicians, also includes new solos by José Maldonado and Guadalupe Torres, both of Spain; special lectures; and chats. Belén Maya is the New York–born daughter of two great flamenco dancers, Carmen Mora and Mario Maya; her performance in Carlos Saura’s 1995 film, Flamenco, opened new avenues for female interpretations of flamenco dance.” (Elizabeth Zimmer, VillageVoice)

Bill Charlap (May 8-19.)
Birdland, 315 W. 44th St./ 8:30PM, +11PM, $40
“There’s a deep soul in the machine that is the Bill Charlap Trio, a precision engine that mates the lyrical and expressive pianist with his joined-at-the-hip partners, the bassist Peter Washington and the drummer Kenny Washington. A special treat finds Charlap playing solo at an early set.” (NewYorker)

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Smart Stuff / Other NYC Events
(Lectures/Discussions, Book Talks, Film, Classes, Food & Drink, Other)

Taste of the Upper West Side (also Saturday)
Columbus Ave between 76th and 77th Sts./ 7PM, $
“The two-evening affair, held outdoors beneath a grand tent, celebrates the best grub the Manhattan ’hood has to offer. On Friday 18, dine on food from 40 eateries, like Zen Taco, Make My Cake, Fishtag and others. Ticket prices are steep but include all the treats along with unlimited wine, signature cocktails and a DJ dance party. Head back to the scene on Saturday 19 for Best of the West, presented by Park West Village. Sample cocktails crafted by mixologists from spots such as Amélie, Maison Pickle and Prohibition, then gorge on tastes from Michelin-starred chef John Fraser as well as dishes from 40 other illustrious restaurants.” (TONY)

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Continuing Events

Jerome Robbins Centennial (May 3-20)
NYS Theater, Lincoln Center / Various times, $30+
“A child of immigrants born in Manhattan in 1918, Jerome Robbins — in his tour across the forms of dance, theater, and cinema — probably left as many enduring monuments as anyone. (These include the brilliant jazz ballet Fancy Free; the musicals West Side Story, Fiddler on the Roof, and Gypsy; and a clutch of incomparable lyrical and dramatic ballets made for his home team, the New York City Ballet.) He also made many enemies, his eighty-year jaunt on this planet inspiring several full-length, tell-all biographies. You’ll have forever to contemplate this raft of accomplishments, but you have three weeks this May to savor 22 ballets at Lincoln Center, including his legendary Afternoon of a Faun on one of five all-Robbins bills. A sixth program — a tribute — opens the season and features two world premieres: NYCB resident choreographer Justin Peck honors Robbins to a score by Leonard Bernstein, another child of immigrants also celebrating a centennial in 2018; and Tony-winning director Warren Carlyle creates a medley of Robbins’s dances from Broadway hits and other sources.” (Elizabeth Zimmer, Village Voice)

Mad. Sq. Eats (May 07-31)
General Worth Square (5th Ave btw 25/26 St.) / near Madison Square Park
11AM-9PM; FREE
“Twice a year, this outdoor food fest brings buzzworthy bites from the city’s best restaurants to Worth Square in the Flatiron District. Highlights include Roberta’s sensational pizza, MeltKraft grilled cheese sandwiches and cheesesteaks by the Truffleist.” (TONY)

“Mad. Sq. Eats brings the diverse flavors of the city’s best restaurants and food entrepreneurs to Worth Square, a prime location in the heart of New York’s historic Flatiron District. The highly anticipated bi-annual event draws hungry crowds of neighborhood residents, workers, and tourists who enjoy this unique opportunity to savor offerings from buzzworthy eateries.”

2018 Vendor List
Burger & Lobster / Jicama / Renegade Lemonade /
the Truffleist / Mayhem Sandwiches / Gotham Poke & Hawaiian Kitchen / Bao by Kaya / La Sonrisa / Frida’s Favorites / Roberta’s /
Duck Season / Daa! Dumplings / Mr. Bing / Baked Cheese Haus / Chick’NCone / Arancini Bros / Top Hops Beer Shop / CousCous /
Melt Ice cream Sandwiches / Ice & Vice / Palenque Arepas /
Coney Shack / Korilla / Casa Toscana / Enfes NYC

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♦ Before making final plans, we suggest you call the venue to confirm ticket availability, plus dates and times, as schedules are subject to change.
♦ NYCity, with a population of  8.6 million, had a record 63 million visitors last year and was TripAdvisor’s Traveler’s Choice Top U.S. Destination for 2018 – awesome! BUT quality shows draw crowds. Try to reserve seats for these top NYC events in advance, even if just earlier on the day of performance.

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Bonus: Nifty 9 – Best Cabarets / Piano Bars NYCity
These are my favorite places for an after dinner night on the town – music and drinks.
Hit the Hot Link and check out what’s happening tonight:

Feinstein’s/54 Below – 254 W 54th St.

The Green Room 42 – 570 Tenth Ave.

Don’t Tell Mama – 343 W 46th St.

Marie’s Crisis – 59 Grove St.

The Rum House, in the Hotel Edison – 228 W. 47th St.

Laurie Beechman Theatre – 407 W 42nd St.

The Duplex – 61 Christopher St.

Sid Gold’s Request Room – 165 W 26th St.

Cafe Carlyle, in the Carlyle Hotel – 35 E. 76th St.
This is the only one not located on Manhattan’s WestSide, and it ain’t cheap, but it has some of the finest singers.

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NYCity Vacation Travel Guide Video (Expedia):

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A PremierPub / West Village

Corner Bistro 331 W. 4th St.

Sometimes you just need a beer and a burger. If so, Corner Bistro is the place you want. Located just outside the hip Meatpacking district, this corner bar and grill is decidedly unhip, but it’s not uncrowded, especially at night. Seems that everyone knows this place has one of the better burgers in town.

kac_120405_phude_corner_bistro_bar_1000-600x450In the maze of streets known as the West Village, where West 4th intersects with West 12th (and West 11th, and West 10th, go figure), you will eventually find Corner Bistro on the corner of West 4th and Jane Street. An unassuming neighborhood tavern, it looks just like dozens of other taverns around town.

The bartender tells me that the Corner Bistro celebrated it’s 50th anniversary last year. The well worn interior tells me that the place itself is much older.

Corner Bistro has outlasted many of those other taverns around town because they know how to keep it simple — just good burgers and beer, fairly priced. The classic bistro Burger is only $6.75, and should be ordered medium rare, which will be plenty rare for most folks. Actually, it will be a juicy, messy delight – make sure you have extra napkins. I like to pull up a stool and sit by the large front window in the afternoon, where I can rest my burger and beer on the shelf, and watch the Villagers walk by.

Corner Bistro seems to attract very different groups of patrons depending on time of day. While it’s crowded with locals in the evening, in the afternoon you hear different foreign languages, and watch groups of euro tourists wander in, led by their guidebooks and smartphones.

For the classic Bistro experience, order your burger with a McSorley’s draft, the dark preferably. This is the same beer that you can get over at the original McSorley’s in the East Village, the pub that claims to be the oldest continually operating bar in NYCity. The only difference is that this McSorley’s ale is served with a smile by the bartenders here. Or you can get a Sierra Nevada, Stella, or Hoegaarden on tap if you want to go upscale a bit. Either way this is a simple, but quality burger and beer experience that is just too rare these days (sorry for the pun).
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Website: cornerbistrony.com
Phone #: 212-242-9502
Hours: 11:30am-4am Mon-Sat; 12pm-4am Sun
Happy Hour: NO
Music: Juke Box
Subway: #1/2/3 to 14th St. (S end of platform)
Walk 2 blk W. on 13th St. to 8th Ave.; 1 blk S. on 8th Ave. to Jane St.
Update:
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“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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