Accolades Pour in for The Dead Rabbit

By Christopher Matthews

Sometimes we call it right here at Upstate-Downtown.

Occasionally, we hit a home run.

Last February, we predicted big things — and highly recommended — The Dead Rabbit, a recently opened tri-level, 19th century-style Irish/New York drinking establishment on Water Street in the Financial District.

Featuring a first floor “standing bar” and an upstairs “parlor”, where 72 meticulously researched, historically accurate drinks from the 1800s are on offer (including flips, slings, toddies, juleps and, of course, cocktails), the Rabbit has wowed both the critics…and the guests I’ve invited down for a friendly libation.

But now, after being open less than six months, the industry awards are also rolling in: at the recent Tales of the Cocktail’s Spirited Awards in New Orleans — the Oscars for mixologists and the cocktail set — The Dead Rabbit scored a trifecta of “Best of..” awards.


After persevering through myriad delays before finally opening in February, including three feet of water from Super Storm Sandy, The Dead Rabbit Grocery and Grog, the brainchild of Belfast barmen Sean Muldoon and Jack McGarry, has been special right out of the gate, serving up liquid history, in extremely drinkable fashion.

At the recent Tales of the Cocktail Spirited Awards, the Rabbit took away three top honors: “World’s Best New Cocktail Bar”; “World’s Best Cocktail Menu”; and “International Bartender of the Year” (Jack McGarry).

The Dream Team: Jack McGarry and Sean Muldoon

The Dream Team: Jack McGarry and Sean Muldoon
(Courtesy Hanna Lee Communication)

Sean is no stranger to the Spirited Awards, having already won the World’s Best Hotel Bar (2009) and World’s Best Cocktail Bar (2010) while at the Merchant Hotel Bar in Belfast. At 24 years of age, Jack, a Mozart behind the stick (and forensic cocktail researcher extraordinaire), is the youngest bartender ever to International Bartender of the Year. And at the Rabbit, the drinks menu, a handsome piece of literature in its own right, is a popular souvenir item (available for purchase at the bar). Which is exactly what my visiting friends Steve and Mauricio did; as we left the bar, they both bought the drinks menu as a memento of their “parlor session” at the Rabbit.

Our hearty congratulations to The Dead Rabbit…we’ll be back soon!

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