Friday, August 22, 2014

Remembering the Dugout

[Looking north on 3rd Avenue at East 13th Street/John Fensten]

Last Friday, I posted sampling of photos that EVG Facebook friend Susan Fensten and her father, John Fensten, took around the East Village in the 1980s.

The above photo showing the old Variety and the Dugout Tavern on the west side of Third Avenue between East 13th Street and East 14th Street brought out the most reader comments.

Back in September 2012, Vanishing New York reader Jason Fernau shared this photo and some memories of the Dugout with Jereniah Moss ...

[Photo from 1983 by Jason Fernau]

The Dugout had one night bartender, Bob from NJ. It seemed like he worked every night, though he must have had a day off. The place was never busy enough to need more than him. I think sometimes in a crunch there was somebody else who would rinse mugs and put them in the freezer. Nicest guy you could ever imagine. Ready with a smile, did what was needed, when it was needed, and we thanked him every time and he thanked us every time for coming in. From the first to the thousandth time you ordered a beer from him, Bob would say "Frosted Mug?" as if the answer could ever be anything but "Yes."

And those frosted mugs were 50 cents.

Read the rest of the post here at Vanishing New York.

The Dugout morphed through the years ... to The Pit Stop, Looking Glass and finally Finnertys.

It was erased to make way for the towering glassy condos of 110 3rd Avenue.

Also, on Wednesday, Curbed did a few now-and-thens with these photos right here.

Previously on EV Grieve:
14 photos of the 1980s East Village


Anonymous said...

I remember The Dugout. I never went in there though. It looked like a biker bar -- a lot of unseemly people.

blue glass said...

when it became the pit stop it went from local bar to a noisy hangout for tough loud drunks with bikes and attitudes.

Anonymous said...

I went to The Dugout in the early years of the 80's Like most bars including The Pyramid, it was a blue collar joint with a friendly easy atmosphere and really inexpensive beer. I went with friends that went to (gasp) NYU. Yes even NYU students were cooler then. These places are almost all gone now and drinking holes today are loud, hyper and themed. What we have lost.

Anonymous said...

I went there a lot when I went to NYU. Beers were 75 cents when I went there. Great place. You can see it in Taxi Driver in a shot.

Gojira said...

See my comment re C'est Magnifique above. Same shit, different day.

Anonymous said...

I was at Parsons from '88-'92. I was very alert to the fact that I was lucky. I spent two of those years sleeping on my Dad's living room floor on 9th St. What I fondly remember about the Dugout is 50cent frosty mugs and friendly neighborhood people. We didn't steal seats, or accept $10 as a price for beer. And our clothes mainly came from thrift stores. Maybe two kids had credit cards. This is true. We tried to get cash paying jobs and we paid cash for everything. Those 50cent frosty mugs provided some great bonding moments over long nights out that I remember because I wasn't hell bent on getting blotto. I'm so glad I'm not in college now. And I'm so grateful for the time I was fortunate enough to be a student. There was a lot of non-money based magic in those days. That was my experience at any rate.

Anonymous said...

What was the bar there after?

Anonymous said...

Hello! Anyone remember the Dugout in the 70s? I'm specifically doing research on one of the bartenders, Hillman Wesley Adams. Hillman tragically died in a fire in 1977 and I am working on a tribute to him. Would appreciate any memories people would be willing to share and/or photos. Thanks! danceranthonymalone [at]