Bay Ridge’s The Wicked Monk is our favorite new way to sin
by Industry Staff
In considering the appropriate appointments for his Bay Ridge ode all things Hibernian, Michael Dorgan didn’t stop at shamrocks and shandy. To outfit the Wicked Monk, now twenty three years ago, he imported a hand-carved back bar, stained-glass windows, a pulpit, gargoyles, and wooden pews from a monastery in Cork City, Ireland, then recruited artist Igor Korotash to produce a 36-foot-long ceiling painting in which friends and employees are depicted, along with flying monks. The bar moved from its original digs to a larger space in the same neighborhood in 2012, but kept all the sacred décor, and even re-commissioned the artist to update his work.
It’s tempting, and wouldn’t be close to a mistake, to glide in and out of this neighborhood legend on nothing but a mist of fine brews, outfitted as the house list is with fortified standouts like Original Sin Cider (made here in the city at 6% alcohol), Oskar Blues G’Knight Red IPA (Longmont, Colorado, 8.7%), and, of course, Guinness Irish Dry Stout, but summer has us hankering for cocktails, and of late we’ve fallen in lust with The Dalmation (Ciroc Vodka and grapefruit juice, with Black Pepper Simple Syrup) and the Moscow Mule (vodka, ginger beer, and fresh lime juice). Irish purists can cap the evening with a pour of Redbreast 12 Year (a mere trifle at $14)—a single-pot-stilled piece of lusciousness from the great minds of Irish Distillers in Cork.
Visitors can counterbalance all this heady stuff with lunch, dinner, or brunch, and our favorite way to start is with Mussels a la Monk—Prince Edward Island Mussels steamed with shallots, green onions, garlic, fresh parsley, and thyme, with white wine and lemon butter. Subtly flavored, richly seasoned, and great fun to share with pals. Larger dishes include Double Cut Lamb Chops (with roasted butternut squash, white beans, and escarole) and Guinness-Braised Short Ribs, along with a cracking-good maple glazed salmon, topped with toasted walnuts and accompanied by stewed lentils and watercress.
On weekends, music is as critical to the atmosphere as the free-flowing Duvel Belgian Strong Pale Ale. Saturdays and Sundays bring a fast changing roster of performers, with June evenings featuring Wild Hearted Son, Locked and Loaded, and Irish Sesium, among others.
The Wicked Monk
9510 3rd Avenue / 347.497.5182 / wickedmonk.com