These days, it’s easy to think Times Square is all Olive Garden and Forever 21. But if you turn east on 44th Street, you’ll stumble across a piece of New York so authentic, you might rub your eyes and wonder if you fell into a time warp.
If you’re looking for a cheap drink in Times Square, you gotta go to Jimmy’s Corner.
Jimmy’s Corner embraces every definition of “dive bar”. It’s the one place in Times Square proper that you can count on finding a cheap drink.
I mean cheap. Not just “New York cheap” but even reasonably priced by tourists from Indiana standards.
I went to Jimmy’s with some friends after a Sunday matinee. We ordered 3 glasses of wine and a Diet Coke (yes, one of my friends is doing #DryJanuary). Our total bill was $15.
Cue New York readers going, “HOLY SHIT THAT IS UNBELIEVABLY CHEAP!” while the rest of you wonder why we put up with such inflated prices…
How this hole in the wall managed to survive the “Disneyfication” of the area and STILL afford rent is a New York miracle.
There’s a juke box that might need repair. You’ll find plenty of regulars who might have a faded picture of themselves laminated on a table top. A sanitary inspection grade of “B” proudly hangs in the window, seemingly proclaiming an ultimate New York “Fuhgettaboutit. We don’t give a fuck.”
The walls are covered in photographs and articles celebrating boxing, of all things. Not exactly what you’d expect in a bar in the heart of the theatre district, but that kind of makes you love it more. Is Jimmy a boxer? Is he still around? Hmm..how many aspiring playwrights have written scenes that take place here?
Up the stairs in the back room you might find a group of struggling actors who probably couldn’t afford to get drunk in the Theatre District without this bar.
New Yorkers have a love and respect for Jimmy’s Corner. You feel it the minute you walk in.
Something about the atmosphere in this unapologetic dingy dive bar conjures up memories a New York I’ve only seen in movies. This may sound sentimental (a real New York might tell me to Shut up, lady) but… It makes me want to walk into those rare rent controlled apartments that artists have lived in since the 70s. Somehow leaves me dreaming of the first workshop performances of RENT. What was NYC like back then? I’m not sure but you can safely get a taste and a cheap buzz at Jimmy’s Corner at 140 W 44th Street, between Broadway and 6th Avenue.