We were generously hosted by <> Less Than Greater Than to facilitate this review. All opinions are 100% genuine.
If you happen to take a stroll down Main Street in Hudson, you may notice what appears to be an old cobbler shop across from The Rail Trail Flatbread Co.
Hudson is known for being an old shoe factory town, but how often do you see an old-fashioned cobbler shop these days? Let’s just say appearances can be deceiving… What lurks behind the display window of this cobbler shop is something this town hadn’t seen before: a speakeasy-inspired bar with a vintage feel of the 20’s.
Owners, and long-time friends, Karim, Jason, and Michael first brought to the area the Rail Trail Flatbread Co., and later New City Microcreamery. So of course I was delighted when they had invited us to check out their newest addition, Less Than Greater Than <>. We were put to the test to see if we could find the entrance, which certainly adds a fun, secretive feel to the experience.
Once we made our way in, I immediately felt like we stepped back in time; images came to mind of the Prohibition days with flapper girls and gangsters sipping on illegal, bootlegged cocktails. The room, cozy and dimly lit, has red velvet curtains and seating, candles, vintage map of the area painted on the walls, and a good-sized bar which I later learned only allows seated guests. This limit on standing room keeps from overcrowding, allowing more intimacy while enjoying cocktails with a friend or significant other.
Oh yes, the cocktails! After taking a look around, we took a seat at the bar and began chatting with the owners over our first drink. Actually, I wouldn’t call this a drink, more like dessert. These frozen cocktails are unlike your typical slushy mudslide; they are handcrafted with fresh ice cream from New City Microcreamery, booze and then frozen using the same liquid nitrogen technique used at their creamery. An adult, upscale milkshake…but thick, so ask for a spoon! They are worth every bite.
While indulging in these creamy, delicious drinks, the owners were telling us of their journey, from when they all met, to how they made their way to Hudson. They brought new life to this town by creating a culinary art; first with their flatbreads, then their ice cream, and now this mysterious little speakeasy with an intriguing little menu of drinks and tapas-type food options.
Octopus?! Yes, there is octopus on this menu. Not a seafood eater in any way, so I was extremely hesitant to try the octopus, but also very curious. It came out as a lettuce wrap with delicious toppings, so I figured why not give it a whirl. The flavors were nice, the texture was good. Overall was glad I tried it (may not get it again), only because it’s not up my “landfood” alley.
What is, and is now my favorite thing, are the pork tacos. So much love and effort must have gone into making these, because I was in heaven. Ever seen the movie “What About Bob?” while he’s eating dinner at the doctor’s house? Well, that was me…relishing in every little bite. I didn’t want it to end.
Back to the drinks. The owners, and their bar staff, take much pride and giving the customer an amazing drink experience. From using the freshest ingredients prepped each day, to the biggest assortment of bitters, aromas, and special liquors…each drink is or can be tailored to what the customer likes, or even how the customer is feeling. At that moment of ordering my drink, I told the bartender I was in the mood for something grassy, something natural. He mixed up a special drink that fit exactly what I was looking for.
The owners mentioned the idea of having a “Tiki Night” once a week. This idea couldn’t be more perfect for the upcoming nice weather. Imagine sipping on a fresh, handcrafted Mia Tai or your favorite tiki-type drink; one that isn’t mixed with sugary syrups and canned fruit. I certainly can’t wait to try one of their Mai Tais and see what else they’d have in store! Be on the lookout for more information!
Do yourself a favor, venture out and find your way in to this speakeasy. The clues are within this article. Hint: look for the “greater than” symbol and the” less than” symbol. If the cobbler is in, you won’t be disappointed. Just don’t bring your old, stinky shoes!
Written By Lauren Freeman
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