34 E 4TH St, New York, NY | Directions 1000340.727382 -73.992316
Neighborhoods: Downtown, NoHo
Great for groups... bring one or join one – Maybe it's an old church. I'm not sure. But the back has nice exposed brick and a DJ booth in what looks like a confessional. There are several long tables and a few small ones in back. Great for big groups... or inserting yourself into someone else's group.
There is a nice selection of beers on tap. And another great selection in bottles. Despite the Irish theme, this is NOT your usual GUINNESS, HARP, GUINNESS Irish bar. The night we were there, it included a tasty hoppy beer called PRETTY THINGS. It wasn't long before we were drinking with the Pretty Things brewmaster and his sales staff. Yeah!
The music was not over-powering, though the acoustics make conversations much louder than they are in real life. The food is typical Irish fare with decent Shepherd's Pie, nice smoked salmon, and other dishes that are okay, but not spectacular.
It's a great, unpretentious bar that's perfect for groups... and you don't have to bring your own.
Irish Session welcoming, friendly, a good pint as well. – After many years of visiting Irish music "sessions" around the city, I find that Swift is a welcoming session with good musicians(Eamon O'Leary and Chris Layer usually host) and a good pint to quench your thurst: be it for good Irish Music or good Irish stout! The Swift session on Tuesdays, like fiddler, Tony DeMarco's Thursday session at Paddy Reilly's has a few microphones and some sound, but generally all the musicians can be heard, and the session is piped to the front bar, so you are sure not to miss a note of the fine trad music. Take it from this "local", Swift is an excellent place to pass a Tuesday night or any night over an excellent pint of fresh stout!
Tuesday session - what session? Go to Dempsey's – Having been told about the 'session' on a Tuesday night by a New York Friend, I went along with him to the Swift with my fiddle to join in. That's what I think a session is.
I was wrong. I arrived - the sound engineer was really nice and welcoming. The guitarist was friendly, and the banjo player was too. The fiddler wasn't. But the general vibe was absolutely of a gig. One where outsiders were not welcome. The fiddle player would not even speak to me! She just carried on regardless.
This is fine - I have no problem at all with people doing a gig if that's what it is advertised as. I like going to them. I respect other musicians enough not to tread on toes and offend by trying to join in. But it's supposed to be a session. It's not - so please stop advertising it as one.
At one point a guy asked if his band who were over from Ireland for St Patrick's night could do a couple of numbers. The response was awesome in it's rudeness. He was basically told 'No' straight off. If he had been honestly and nicely told by the band that it wasn't a session it would have been OK. Instead he got non-responsive dismissal. Again - NOT what a session would have been like.
All in all - I finished my pint and went round the corner to Dempsey's where I was welcomed with open arms by a group of 15 or so real musicians who wanted to hear what I played, where I come from, told me what tunes they were going to play, were happy to join in with me, and welcomed my playing along with theirs. Now that's a REAL SESSION. I left at 2, had pints bought for me, bought pints back for new friends, and with several phone numbers for people who wanted me to come back again.
So thanks to Dempsey's for a GREAT night. Boo to Swift's. I left Swift's with barely a soul in the bar and people politely clapping at the end of each tune.
If you want a great session, leave Swift's immediately, go 5 minutes round the corner on to 2nd and have a good night.
Not the same anymore... – This place has completely lost its luster. Before, when Sean and Bernadette were bartending, this place really rocked and they gave lots of buybacks because they appreciated big tippers. They also gave an effort to know everyone and to make sure that everyone had a good time.
Now, they have the same snobby bartender-types that work in upscale bars with the "I'm too good for you" attitude. Recently, my friend and I were tipping the bartender well (for about 2.5 hours) and we didn't even get 1 buyback!!! This has happened on more than one occasion. Also, the bartenders are closed and don't seek conversation with anyone.
Forget this place and head over to Puck Fair. The atmosphere there is more of what Swift's was about 5 years ago - friendly bartenders, cool crowd, and lots of giant-screen tv's.
Right now, Swift's is just a shell of its former self. Don't bother.
Nasty staff, watch your credit card, BYOC (Bring your own charm)... – Looks like a nice place, but you MUST give a credit card before you order. Then they forget to give it back to you whien they bring the check. My friend and I paid cash, then left, fleeing the drunken buffoons who were screaming and throwing food in the very loud back room. The next day when I called to see if they had my card, they were nasty, and surlier still when I went to pick it up: When I said who I was and politely said I was there to pick up my card, Miss Bitter "I'm really an actress" snorted, rattled bottles for a good minute before she could be bothered to reach behind her to pick up my card... "Here you go" she deadpans with a fake smile.. A hour in the heat to get her smarm from behind the nice looking bar- I am guessing this is an absentee owner not knowing what is going on at his bar. Enjoy...
BORING, OVER PRICED BOTTLES, below average SERVICE – The waitress seemed friendly, however she was soo slow and it was a friday night! Because her service took her so long, we only tipped her 10% after the first round, and she refused to come back after that. Needless to say, we didnt stay long. There is a huge beer selection, but no bottles under 6 dollars (Even a Coors Light, so choose wisely). Pretty good music, but it is so loud that it was hard to hear. For that area, I would have expected better, so if youre ever around Coopers Square, just go to the bar across the street to Coopers on 5th
its the best – Its more fun than kicking our prez between the legs!!!! The bartenders are straight from hell and aim to bring you back with them. It's the best ride though!!!
L'Chaim – I live in PA and was in NY alone and decided to visit three Irish pubs, with a pint planned at each one. I started out at Fiddlestick's and stuck with the plan: one pint and out. I actually was trying to go to Lunasa second but somehow walking around I ended up closer to Swift and so chose that second. It was a beautiful Sunday afternoon so very quiet but relaxed. When I heard Dylan playing when I came in I took that as a good sign as well. The bartender was very friendly and there was also an off duty bartender there who was very nice as well (won't use their names to protect their privacy). So I blew my plan and ended up having more than my allotted three or four pints just at Swift alone. I really found the bar very comfortable and nice, with awesome beer selections. As I understand it gets very busy during peak periods, I cannot comment on how it would be then. I did learn how to say cheers or "to life" in Hebrew which I didnt expect to learn in an Irish pub, and also got advice on other Irish bars worth trying (for my part I had them looking at some of these reviews online, as the bartenders had not seen them). I am not sure I am cut out for these pub crawls, but I gave it a try! Highly recommended.
One Of The Best Chill Bars In The Area With Amazing Beer List – Swift is a bar that you can go with your friends to chill at. It isn't as upscale and trendy as so many other spots are, but it's great for bringing a group of friends. The beer selection is vast and offers options from all over the world. Prices on some beers can be steep, though, so be sure to ask before ordering (example: Delerium Tremens bottle (12 oz.) goes for $10). Tables can be hard to come by but the back area offers plenty of standing room. The area near the bar gets quite crowded and makes ordering difficult but it's worth a wait for such an amazing beer selection. The music on Friday/Saturday nights makes you remember your college years, with 80s and other party music dominating the rotation. Good looking guys and girls add to the atmosphere here and make this bar a tried and true destination that my friends and I are constantly revisiting.
Great Bar!! – Swifts is one of my favorite bars to go to in New York almost any day of the week. Great Beer Selection and the Guiness is especially tasty! The weekends are a blast, and the crowd is a lot of fun. Awesome bartenders who like to be more than friendly to the females. Beware ladies! They are experts!
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