440 Fifth Avenue, Park Slope
Since Jackie’s 5th Amendment closed last year (RIP, old friend), this Park Slope stalwart has been eyed as its natural successor, even though they have a habit of kicking out the old-timers Jackie’s always welcomed with open arms. It’s right down the block, for one thing, and is another no-frills spot to down bottles of Bud and watch the game, a relative rarity in the ever-gentrifying bar scene that surrounds it. (Before Jackie’s we lost Timboo’s, before that O’Connor’s, before that Snooky’s. Sigh.) For all but the staunchest regulars, Smith’s is less welcoming than the hear-no-evil-see-no-evil haven that was Jackie’s, but they’ve earned the right to be. Anyway, they’ve got darts, a solid jukebox, dirt-cheap drinks, and a hilariously polarized Yelp page full of loving raves from regulars and angry tirades from newcomers who feel they’ve been snubbed by the bartenders. (“I’ll take the ‘hipster’ spot that serves people with respect any day of the week.”) Seems to us they must be doing something right.