cold beer, warm hearts 45 Years and Counting

| 15 Sep 2015 | 01:55

Our Town is celebrating our 45th anniversary by profiling a neighborhood business that has been around longer than we have. Know of a local business that should be on our list? Email us at

Since 1961, Brady’s on the corner of 82nd street and Second Avenue, has been the place to quench one’s thirst, hang out with neighbors, and root hard for a favorite sports team.

Rooting for a sports team took on epic proportions in February 2008 and 2012, when, at the behest of Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s office, Brady’s changed its name to “Manning’s” for each of those Super Bowl weeks.

“I couldn’t believe when they (the mayor’s office) called, but said ‘sure!’” the bar’s owner, Dan Brady, said. “Figured the bar would get a lot of good publicity, which it did, and it was really exciting. Mayor Bloomberg and I actually pulled down the veil together to reveal our new sign.”

Brady, 54, took over for his father (also Dan) in 1991, following what he thought was to be a temporary three-month position.

“When Dad offered me the opportunity to buy, I thought it would be a great to be my own boss after seven years in the corporate world,” he said. “I mainly used my own experience and common sense to become successful.”

Brady’s exterior signage clues you in: “OVER 30 COLD BEERS”, “DAMM GOOD BLOODYS”, “CUERVO FROZEN MARGARITAS $7.50” and “$1 Pool until 8PM.”

Walk inside and you’ll see a long bar, open space and tables, many flat screen televisions, a dart board and a pool table. And you can’t miss the keepsakes on the exposed brick walls: a Muhammed Ali boxing glove, Joe Namath and Derek Jeter uniforms, a Pete Rose poster, a Wayne Gretzky photo, all of them autographed.

Jack Fogarty has been drinking beer and watching sports at Brady’s for about 15 years. He said he appreciates the eclectic crowd, including recent college graduates playing in the dart and pool leagues and mixing with an older clientelle.

A favored time to stop by, Fogarty said, is late afternoon Thursdays, when two brothers and a friend sit at the bar, and in great voice, sing along to Frank Sinatra tunes playing on the jukebox. “The crowd goes crazy as they have professional singing voices,” he said.

In 2010, Brady had his most special personal moment at the bar. “I actually asked my wife, Jill, to marry me at Brady’s during halftime of a Steelers game. She is from Pittsburgh and we were there with a crowd of fans and friends,” Brady recalled. “Everyone was surprised and excited.”

Brady is also committed to helping the community. On September 22, the bar will be hosting its 13th annual golf outing to benefit the Wounded Warrior Project at the Split Rock Golf Club in the Bronx.

On a recent late Friday afternoon, while sitting down with a cold Shipyard Pumpkin Ale, Brady said the financial crisis of 2008, followed by the ongoing Second Avenue subway construction, has put a big hit on business.

“The past eight years have been tough,” he said. “When the subway finally opens, I’m hopeful that it should help all the businesses on the Upper East Side.”

And 30 cold beers and good company will still be there, as it has for over a half-century.