Domestic Life

The Rye House keeps it close to home

Whiskey bars tend to come in one of two guises: the hushed, sepia-toned den where good posture is as elemental as proper glassware, and the grittier kind of joint where Jesse James would feel at home and punk rock resounds.

Then along came Rye House, which bridged the gap when it opened in November. The inviting space suggests a Main Street tavern rejiggered by Frank Lloyd Wright acolytes.

Lynnette Marrero and Jim Kearns, both Freemans alums, composed a drink list with their eyes trained on made-in-the-USA spirits, wine and beer. Traditional bourbons and ryes share shelf space with whiskey from Utah, Applejacks from Jersey and brews from Chelsea Piers. Their finds are highlighted in signature drinks like the honeyed Golden Delicious, which is simple enough to secure a recurring role in your home-bar rotation (click here to download the recipe).

Rye House's kitchen also shows a patriotic bent; menu offerings cover a range of the country's greatest regional hits, from boiled peanuts ($6) to a Sloppy Joe enlivened with pickled jalapeños ($12).

Do as they do in Steel City and order a Pittsburgh ($10), an über deli sandwich stacked with suspension-bridge-like precision. Or dig into a basin of drunken mussels ($10), steamed in Ommegang's citrusy Witte beer, for a taste of summer in New England.

To the Rye House, we pledge our boozy allegiance.

Rye House, 11 W. 17th St. (between Fifth Ave. and Avenue of the Americas); 212-255-7260 or ryehousenyc.com