I am a singe guy who often dines at fine restaurants alone at the bar. I enjoy the rap with a good bartender, often as a later diner I get a few plates from the kitchen as a 'tester', and in general, I don't have the patience for table service... say what you will these are my all time favorite lunch/dinner bars:
Union Square Cafe
JUdson Grill (RIP)
Four Seasons (Lunch at bar)
Atelier (Bar is lame, but food is great)
I'd love all your thoughts, comments, etc. from other bar diners...