Bushwick bar fatigue is a starting to feel like real thing now that the neighborhood has crossed into Firmly Gentrifying Future Williamsburg territory, giving speakeasies and the small plates-serving set the cue to move in and jack everybody else's rent up a million percent. So it's refreshing, frankly, to see a new drinking hole move into the area that will not handcraft you a baked egg. Old Stanley's—which opened off the Myrtle-Wyckoff L and M stops about three weeks ago—is, well, just a casual, neighborhood bar. With beer, people, a pinball machine and a television turned to the YES channel. All hail.
Old Stanley's is a collaboration between Bryan Quackenbush, Chelsea Altman, Ben Altman and Matt Webber—the gang's independently been involved with other local spots like Allswell in Williamsburg and The Narrows in Bushwick. "We're all native New Yorkers who were essentially just trying to open a bar that reminded us of the bars we grew up going to, and sneaking in to," Quackenbush told us. Even the name is old school, taken from a Manhattan bar owned by the Altmans' father in the 1960s and 70s. And though Bushwick might be the hippest of the hip these days, there'll be no monocle-donning and #normcoring over here. "We thought about doing a speakeasy, tapas place," Quackenbush joked. "But then we were like, why don't we just open a bar?"
The Wyckoff Ave spot boasts a pretty extensive, low-key beer collection, with drafts like Bronx Pale Ale, Victory Prima and Miller Lite ranging from $3-$6. Bottled and canned beer runs $4-$7, with offerings including Dale's Pale Ale, Red Stripe, Labatt Blue and Coors Light, if you're yearning for a Silver Bullet. Rail drinks run $7 and come in pints for optimal boozing; there's also a $6 frosted mug and shot deal. There are free shelled peanuts on the bar all day (and night) long, and bartenders can whip you up a hot dog or sausage if you're hungry—Quackenbush says pretzels and other basic bar food will be available soon.
Decor-wise, the bar's bedecked with old movie posters, sports memorabilia, a few taxidermy animals and even a photograph of Quackenbush's grandmother in a sultry dance outfit. There's also a jukebox, a Playboy-themed pinball machine, Big Buck Hunter and the aforementioned television, which on a visit this week was turned to a Yankees game. Come in for a beer, stay for another six, and save your miserable, misplaced Bo'Sox pride for Professor Thom's.
Old Stanley's is located at 226 Wyckoff Ave between Menahan and Grove Streets in Bushwick, Brooklyn. Cash only.