In Forest Hills Sunday night, the champagne was flowing, liberally, and over the heads of screaming, ecstatic Giants fans.
Kathleen McNulty, the owner of Bar and Restaurant just off of Austin Street and a Giants fan herself, couldn’t have been happier. And she was the one paying for all that champagne.
“It was a super night, really,” McNulty said. “It didn’t calm down very easily either.”
Before the game started, McNulty and the rest of the staff lit some lucky candles, prepared a buffet and taped pictures of Eli Manning to the walls. Newspapers with headlines from recent playoff wins were stuck over mirrors and old autographed photos.
Dervla Amad, a waitress who has watched her fair share of playoff games from behind the bar at The Irish Cottage, could sense the confidence in the fans who walked through the door.
“It was brilliant in here,” Amad said. “We had our blue and white candles and our hats. Everything was ready to go.”
The fans in the bar that night exuded confidence, Amad said. And as the game wore on, despite the score, fans hung on until that last, almost reluctant touchdown by Bradshaw.
And then, chaos.
“They were having a great time then,” McNulty said. “They were ringing the bell over the bar and out into the street. We bought shots of Jameson for everybody.”
Amad said fans stood on their chairs — and in the low-ceilinged bar, that’s a dangerous proposition.
“I opened champagne and sprayed it on everyone,” McNulty said, mimicking the players in the post-game locker room. “It was a mess, everyone was soaked. But they loved it.”
Fans who had stayed home to watch the game said they felt the same confidence in their quarterback, and their team, even with the Giants on the ropes late in the game.
“Where there’s a will, there’s a way,” said Kadeem Michael, 17, of Queens. “I knew they were going to pull it out.”
Michael stood in a pristine white and red Eli Manning jersey on the subway platform. He’s been a Giants fan all his life. Standing and waiting for an express train, he looked like he half-expected a cloud to roll through the station.
“I’m just really happy for Eli,” he added.”
Ryan Totora, 26, of Kew Gardens, was taking a break from work clad in a well-worn Giants hoodie.
“We had Eli in the fourth quarter,” Totora said. “It didn’t matter what happened.”
With the parade through the Canyon of Heroes set for Tuesday, some fans said they would go, and others said they were content just to
McNulty thought about it for a minute.
“They’ll be throwing confetti out the windows and that?” she said. “I think I might go myself.”