Best Neighborhood Bar/Central - 2008
PS14 is like the rec room that belongs to the coolest friend you had in high school (or the one with the most permissive parents). You can show up whenever, stay as long as you want (even past what would be your welcome at most other places), break things, and generally behave however you want, as long as it doesn't endanger others and you keep it within the room's confines. Plus there's a pool table, always a predictably weird cast of characters, and some great tunes you've probably never heard before. But seriously — PS14 is like an undepressing dive, where the surroundings are slightly tatty but the people are interesting and, often, cute. Maybe that disqualifies it from "dive" status and instead just makes it one of the most unpretentious, fun little holes keeping it real since before downtown was happening. Every night promises a different left-of-dial flavor, from rock en español to new electro and booty bass to forgotten rock nuggets to the infamous monthly zombie parties hosted by Notorious Nastie and Otto Von Schirach. And its, errrr, intimate size makes it feel like a private party when underground legends Little Brother and Jeru the Damaja decide to take the stage. Assholes and douchebags, stay away.