blowupletters.jpgBetween the accelerating AC bill, the boredom of August and the depression of knowing we don't summer anywhere, Gothamist has been more and more interested in revisiting the idea of cheap. Fish Bar is not what we'd technically call a dive (we're not afraid to let our feet touch the floor). It is an adorable and filled with kitsch: mermaids, tackle, shells, and buoys line the walls and compete with the Stoli for room on the bar. On a block dominated by Grace & Jack Lamb (the bar shares a wall with very elegant Jewel Bako), Fish Bar is easy to get comfortable in, without pretense.

bar3.jpgHappy hour is 3-7 and beer is around $4 at other times, refreshing to those that know they won't have to sell their souls for the next round. The mohawked owner, originally from Wales, is often behind the bar, openly mocking regulars and sometimes changing music mid-song (while we were there it vacillated from 80's Britpop to the soundtrack of That Thing You Do!). Begining again in September the bar will host a Monday night quiz night, free to enter with a bar tab going to the winners. Eschewing the usual set-up of having one quizmaster or a revolving cast, the owner will joining the other quiz nights in town and running the show (between smoke breaks). He'll be rejoining the other quiz nights in town including Tuesdays at The Baggot Inn, Wednesdays at Pete's Candy Store and more [in Ask Gothamist's run-down]. Take another look at the Fish Bar and see if you don't get swept away.

Photos courtesy of Maya Corneille.

237 East Fifth Street, near Second Avenue