For those unaware, Excelsior ("Ever higher!") has taken New Yorkas state motto for its name. This liquor-serving incarnation of the slogan boasts an expansive, lush outside space with plastic flamingos. Play a few classics on the jukebox, which had Echo and the Bunnymen, the Psychedelic Furs, and INXS, and quaff a fresh, extra boozy ("Ever drunker!") margarita served in a tall pilsner glass. Most of the primarily button-down-shirt-and-khaki-clad bargoers seemed, not surprisingly, to live nearby, judging from the presence of several dogs, who wove among the bar stools and tables begging for a pat on the head.
Some contend that Park Slope is just the suburbs, and the Fifth Avenue gay bar EXCELSIOR ably demonstrates that that's not such a bad thing. The interior--bathrooms included--is spotless; the bartenders are gentlemen, not shirtless himbos; and the cruising-to-drinking ratio (just enough of the former, plenty of the latter) makes Excelsior what all gay bars promise to be but few are: fun. More »