Gay Dive That Has Best Survived 'Progress' New York 2009 - Boots & Saddle
When the relatively skanky Boots & Saddle underwent a name change and a renovation in 2007, hearts sank all through the gay community, and even some LGBT-friendly straights were upset about it. The main appeal of the small, long-running bar was its continual absence from the radar, its ramshackle lack of glitz, pretension, and (sometimes, it seemed) air. But jump ahead, and the place is still there, still small, and still seedy—just with a nicer-looking bar and some slightly rearranged furniture. And it has long gone back to being called Boots & Saddle (though insiders sometimes call it either B&S or Bras and Girdles). By any name, the place may seem repellent to discerning tourists, but there's no denying the appeal of cheap beer blasts, happy hours, and "Let's Make a Deal" nights, not to mention karaoke events hosted by a drag queen on the world's smallest stage. Most notably, the people are super-friendly. The problem is, you often wish they weren't.