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Explore the Unknown: 2nd Floor on Clinton

24 Dec

2nd floor on clinton

Speakeasies are certainly becoming a trend in New York City these days…unmarked doors, Prohibition-style cocktails, antique furniture, the list goes on. However, there is one spot that picked up on this trend before it even became one. 2nd Floor on Clinton, a small speakeasy lounge which has been around for three years, is still relatively unknown in the city. Located above the restaurant Barramundi, this lounge is most definitely worth checking out. The space, owned by Tony Powe, is run by two award-winning mixologists, Ektoras Binikos and Sarah Miller and features a stunning 28 specialty cocktails. Their cocktail menu is broken down by liquor, making it easy to peruse and find your spirit of choice. If you are a whiskey fan, I highly recommend the Marie Laveau, a cocktail comprised of Basil Hayden’s bourbon, taverna, elderflower, cardamom and orange bitters. It really hit the spot. The impressive cocktail menu also changes seasonally, with new cocktails being invented all the time.

2nd floor on clinton

In addition to their top notch cocktails and large selection, the space itself is wonderfully intimate and cozy. Adorned with old books, couches and dim lighting, this space just makes you want to curl up for the night with a strong cocktail and a good book. While you’re there you can also enjoy small snacks like charcuterie, cheese and chocolates, all sourced from locations on the Lower East Side.

2nd Floor on Clinton is only open Wednesday through Saturday evenings and they host a special Prohibition Night every Wednesday. This night plays homage to the days of Prohibition with specialty cocktails, music and cupcakes from Prohibition Bakery.

Thanksgiving Apple Cider Punch - FRT

For a low-key night out, outstanding drinks and good conversation, head to this hidden den on the Lower East Side!

2nd Floor on Clinton is located at 67 Clinton Street. 

 

Ringing in the New Year in NYC

23 Dec

Don’t know where to party to ring in 2014? From dinners to masquerade balls, we have some of this year’s hottest spots to head to for New Year’s Eve.

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Daniel is celebrating New Year’s Eve with a night to remember, featuring two different dining options. Enjoy their pre-gala dinner from 5:30-6:30pm with a three course prix fixe menu for $215 per person, with a jazz trio playing music throughout dinner or opt for their fancier gala dinner, from 8:30-9:45pm. This dinner will feature a six course tasting menu for $625 per person, with a jazz trio playing during dinner followed by a DJ and dancing after dinner, as well as a midnight champagne toast and chefs’ parade.

Have an amazingly fun New Year’s Eve by joining the sexiest party around. Speakeasy Moderne, beginning at 10pm, showcases singing, flappers, dancers, cocktails and more at Stage 72. As midnight approaches, the ball in Times Square will be displayed and bubbly will be passed around. Tickets are $200 and feel free to come dressed in your best 1920s attire.

Richard Sandoval’s Maya Modern Mexican Tequileria is offering up a NYE prix fixe menu with two seatings; from 5-6:30pm and at 9pm. The earlier seating is just $69, while the latter is $99 and includes the ball drop, mariachi band and a champagne toast. The dinners include delicious cuisine such as chile relleno, chicken breast adobada and more.

Hudson Terrace is hosting NYE on both its rooftop and salon floors, for a fun-filled evening of debauchery. There are three different party options available, all including a five hour premium open bar, passed hors d’oeuvres and a champagne toast. Ticket prices range from $175-$2500.

XL Nightclub is ringing in the New Year with The Phantom Ball. This masquerade event invites guests to come dressed in phantom/black and white attire, while enjoying music by DJs Johnny Dynell and Serving Ovanhess. Doors open at 9pm and a limited amount of pre-sale tickets are available for $40.

The Lambs Club is offering diners an exclusive prix fixe menu this NYE. There are two fun options for the evening: cocktails and dancing ($200) includes passed hors d’oeuvres, desserts, open bar and handcrafted cocktails until 2am, while the five course dinner ($375) includes all of the above, plus a wine pairing.

Tablao is hosting an epic NYE celebration, beginning at 8:30pm and lasting until 4am. The evening includes a three course dinner, open bar, TV countdown, a champagne toast, live flamenco dancers, DJ, dancing and party favors.

Pounds & Ounces is hosting a NYE Masquerade Ball for $125 from 9pm until 2am. The evening will feature an open bar, passed hors d’oeuvres, complementary party favors, masks and a midnight toast.

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Warm Up Your Nights at The Cellar

26 Nov

The Cellar 2

Tiny Fork Restaurant, which debuted on the Lower East Side earlier this year, has made room for nightlife below ground. The Cellar, located beneath the restaurant, is now open Thursdays through Saturdays at 10pm. The late night spot is a great spot to head to after any oyster-filled dinner and keeping with the theme, the downstairs lair boasts sea-themed decor. From the old buoys hanging from the ceiling to the seashells encased in the tables, this spot would attract even Ariel and her crowd of party-goers (once they turn 21, of course).

The Cellar 1

The exclusive room is dark and sultry, only lit with red lights and rimmed with leather banquet seating. The bar downstairs is fully equipped to dole out all your favorite ‘tails and if you must snack, mac ‘n cheese bites are available. With blustery winter weather upon us, this sexy spot is sure to woo patrons in and warm them up with its beachy atmosphere.

The Cellar is located beneath Tiny Fork at 167 Orchard Street. 

 

 

The Brew Inn is Welcomed to Greenpoint

18 Nov

the brew inn

Nestled into a cute street in Greenpoint, Brooklyn is a new gastropub, currently hosting an exclusive pop-up, called The Brew Inn. Top Chef season 5 finalist Jeffrey McInnis and season 11 contestant Janine Booth are joining forces to bring their culinary talents to the masses. The pair will be opening their own restaurant, Root & Bone, in Manhattan in early 2014. For the time being, they are showing off their kitchen magic at The Brew Inn. November 22nd and 23rd each host two seatings, at 7 and 9:15pm, where guests will enjoy a nine course menu along with beer pairings. Tickets can be purchased for just $65 here. This exclusive pop-up will give diners a sneak peak at the flavors and direction of Root & Bone. The duo will showcase upscale dining from the South, along with their favorite comfort foods. Amy Cunningham, executive chef at The Brew Inn, invited McInnis and Booth to debut their cooking at the brand new bar and restaurant.

brew inn

The Brew Inn, which opened late last week, features a full dinner menu, available at the tables as well as the bar, along with an impressive 30 draft beers, all from craft breweries in New York. The bar also features select wines on tap, as well. The cozy atmosphere gives the bar a welcoming glow, inviting imbibers and diners in with open arms. The food is also great, with menu items such as Grilled Pierogis, Deviled Eggs, Pulled Pork Sammy, and Greenpoint Kielbasa Rueben. Not only are their prices out of this world, but their beer deals aren’t too shabby, either. Taste six different brews for a mere $6…sounds like a dream, right? Oh, and did we mention the friendly barstaff who are extremely knowledgable about every single brew they are serving? If only this place was in our backyard, we’d be here every day.

The Brew Inn is located at 924 Manhattan Avenue in Greenpoint. 

Tokya: A 3-D Nightlife Experience

8 Nov

tokya

Wedged in near happening nightlife spots Lavo and Tao emerges Tokya, a new nightclub and lounge brought to you by the masterminds behind some of New York’s hottest spots, such as Pink Elephant, Upstairs, XO Lounge and more. The multi-level space is unlike others in the city, utilizing a state of the art 3-D digital projection system, which illuminates and changes the interior design on a nightly basis. Snag a pair of 3-D glasses upon arrival and you’re good to go!

tokya

Inside you will find an ultra hip club, outfitted with a modern Japanese touch, including a raw bar for patrons to enjoy before the party really begins. The DJ booth stands six feet high in the center of the arena, allowing guests to dance around or look down upon it from the mezzanine level. Additionally, Tokya offers an exclusive VIP room that can accommodate up to 75 guests and is equipped with its own DJ booth, white leather couches and lighting that changes with the clap of your hand.

tokya

The fully equipped bar features a classic cocktail list along with signature drinks comprised of organic and locally sourced ingredients. Throughout the club you can find comfortable seating, where you can enjoy both bottle and cocktail service. The club’s official opening took place last weekend with the EC Twins at the DJ booth. Prior to its official opening, Tokya has hosted some big name celebrities, including Drake, Victor Cruz, and Busta Rhymes. 

Tokya is located at 40 E. 58th Street. 

The Doe Fund’s 2013 Gala

28 Oct

the doe fund

All New Yorkers should learn about and support an amazing charity called The Doe Fund. This organization helps people every day through programs providing paid work, workforce development, job placement, transitional, supportive and permanent housing, drug testing and counseling, as well as comprehensive social and educational services. Last week, over 500 of New York’s most influential business and philanthropic community members joined The Doe Fund at Cipriani 42nd Street to celebrate the return to self-sufficiency by thousands of formerly homeless New Yorkers.

doe fund

The Doe Fund is best known for their award-winning program Ready, Willing & Able, which keeps more than 150 miles of New York City clean as part of a transitional employment program for formerly homeless and incarcerated men. The elegant evening turned emotional as two Doe Fund members — one current, one graduate, spoke to attendees about the support they received from The Doe Fund and how it changed their lives. Program graduate Terrrance Coffie and Ready, Willing & Able CORE trainee Devon Green both spoke with eloquence, emotion and passion. The evening also marked the premiere of Work Works, a documentary created by renowned film company Grand Street Media.  The documentary featured The Doe Fund’s trainees and graduates speaking about the successes of The Doe Fund’s Ready, Willing & Able program in their own words.

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Many big name celebrities also stood behind The Doe Fund last week including Governor Andrew Cuomo, Carrie Preston, Dascha Polanco, Derek Warburton, Jessica White, Zineb Oukach, Selenis Leyva, Steve & Wendy Madden, among others. We spoke with some about why they support The Doe Fund. Stylist Derek Warburton said, “I have a program for homeless women. And it makes sense for me to support the guys, too. I was homeless growing up, so for me — especially now, with young kids getting thrown out of foster care at 18 — I know that life story, very well. It was really important for me to give back to the community. It’s a great organization; I love them.”

We also chatted with Orange is the New Black‘s Dascha Polanco, who stated, “Being involved in a show about prison, I spoke to my publicists about getting involved in a charity that helps people who were incarcerated. The Doe Fund is so great and people need to know about it. People need to learn about what they do, in the event that they fall into a situation where The Doe Fund can help. It makes me really proud that humanity is helping these individuals. These men get housing, education, they start looking forward to a new life. It makes me proud to be involved in something like this.”

doe fund

Last but not least, we briefly spoke with True Blood‘s Carrie Preston. She said, “I hadn’t really heard much about The Doe Fund, honestly, and then they approached me to attend the event. I started looking into them and I was like, ‘of course,’ I see all the men in blue out on the streets in the city. I hadn’t put together that it was The Doe Fund giving them all these opportunities. I see these men all the time and they are definitely making our city cleaner and The Doe Fund is allowing them to make other choices in their life.”

doe fund

The evening closed out with an exciting and lively auction and raffle. The evening ended up raised over $1.7 million towards The Doe Fund!  “Over the past 25 years, Doe Fund has proven that a job is the number one most effective social program we have as a society.  Over and over again, hundreds of times per year, adult men take advantage of the opportunities available to them in order to provide for themselves and their families,” reflected George McDonald, Founder and President of The Doe Fund.  “We are extremely grateful to everyone in this room tonight for recognizing that a hand up, not a hand out, is the key to solving some of our society’s most intractable social problems.”
Learn more about The Doe Fund here
 

Frightening Festivities: Where to Party This Halloween

24 Oct

happy halloween

Pounds & Ounces: This Chelsea hub is throwing a B-tchin’ Halloween Bash on October 31st. Doors open at 9pm and make sure to come in costume — there will be a contest where you will have the chance to win cash and other prizes. There is no entry fee for this fun soiree, but for $25 you get two cocktails plus a raffle ticket for the chance to win two tickets to Britney Spears’ new Las Vegas show, Britney: Piece of Me. A portion of the proceeds from the night’s event will benefit Unicef.

Katch Brewery & Grill: Halloween night is going to be jumping in Astoria. Starting at 7pm, Katch will be playing host to a fun Halloween bash. Come dressed as your favorite character to win a prize, and enjoy drink specials such as $4 Katch House Brews, Katch Pumpkin Brew, Stella Artois, Figenza Vodka cocktails and Pimms Cups. Both the beers and Pimms will be available in pitchers for $15 and there will also be $4 bottles of Bud and Bud Light. Budweiser girls will be around the bar from 8-10pm handing out prizes.
The Royal: This upscale sports bar is catering its Halloween to those who keep their partying restricted to the weekends. On November 2nd, attend their ‘Better Late Than Never’ Halloween Bash where you can enjoy music by DJ Delro. Come dressed in costume for your chance the awesome cash prize!

Maya: This Mexican restaurant is ready to celebrate Dia De Los Muertos with an awesome, special menu! From November 1st through 3rd, Maya will be serving some traditional dishes such as Tamal de Flor de Calabeza, Tamal Verde, and Trio de Tamales. They will also be offering the Margarita del Diablo! Additionally, they would love to hear from patrons on what Dia de los Muertos means to them — tweet @RestaurantMaya and Facebook @MayaNYC using the hashtag #DayoftheDead!

Evelyn Drinkery: This Lower East Side bar is hosting Mahogany Hall Bordello Ball, a Halloween Affair on October 31st. Beginning at 9pm, this fun night will pay homage to turn of the century New Orleans with specialty cocktails such as the French 75, Sazerac, Domaine Chandon Rose, Grand Marnier Smash and Vieux Carre. Tickets are $40 and include one signature cocktail, passed hors d’oeuvres, dj entertainment and private access. Have a ball at this ball!

Mumbles: This long standing hot spot is offering patrons a Triple Dose of Evil, a trio of deadly cocktails! Included in this trio is Jason’s Deadly Martini (Meyers Rum, dry vermouth, rimmed with orange sugar and black olive garnish), Dracula’s Kiss (Bacardi, Cointreau, pineapple juice, strawberry puree), and Blood Shooter (berry vodka, Tad of Roses lime, Bailey’s, grenadine).

The Bell House: Love the ’90s? Join The Bell House at My So-Called Prom: A 90s Halloween Party, featuring 90s party band, The Bayside Tigers. Expect 1990s hits all night long and make sure to dress accordingly. Doors open at 8pm and the show starts at 9pm. Tickets are $12.

355 Bowery: Renowned PR company The Baddish Group is hosting ‘Spirit to Wake the Living,’ a fun evening playing homage to Day of the Dead. On Halloween night, from 6-10pm, enjoy this pop-up, which will feature face paint designs, small bites and Piedra Azul cocktails. E-mail info@thebaddishgroup.com to RSVP.

XL Nightclub: Check out the sassy Boo Bitch! Halloween party. DJ and producer Jonathon Peters will be spinning a spooktacular set on October 31st, beginning at 10pm. The club will test the limits of its state-of-the-art sound system and attempt to bring the dead back to life! Costumes are encouraged. There are only 100 limited $10 presale tickets available, which can be purchased at http://boobitch-es2.eventbrite.com/?rank=1&sid=7eaa46e33dac11e3835d12313b00c181. For bottle service and table reservations, please call 212-239-2999.2999.

Trick or Treat: Your Guide to Halloween in NYC

16 Oct

Halloween

When you live in New York City, things that go bump in the night are the least of your worries. In a city that has it all it’s no surprise that there are more than plenty of activities to get you in the Halloween spirit. From plays to haunted houses and everything in between, we are bringing you the best frights, tricks, treats and more!

Photo credit: Jason Russo

Photo credit: Jason Russo

Blood Manor: This haunted house has been around for a number of years, but it’s not going anywhere anytime soon. Wind your way through 5,000 square feet of terror, through a room of killer clowns, zombie strippers, 3D madness, and other horrors you can scarcely imagine. Blood Manor’s big strength is their amazing props, costumes, makeup and set design. It is truly a sight to see (we won’t blame you if you close your eyes though). This haunted house does not stick to one theme, but includes tons of rooms filled with blood, gore and screaming. You never know what you will encounter next.

Photo credit: Patrick Alberty

Photo credit: Patrick Alberty

Dracula: Horse Trade Theater Group presents RadioTheatre’s original rendition of Dracula. The show is a live storytelling audio-theater adaptation by Orson Welles and Dan Dianchi of Bram Stoker’s original classic. You won’t find elaborate costumes or scenery, but you will encounter a fabulous cast of storytellers, an original orchestral score and fun sound effects. Imagine a live reading of your favorite ‘books on tape’…that is RadioTheater. The actors provide amazing voicework that will keep you captivated and get you in the mood for All Hallow’s Eve.

Killers 2

Killers 2: Nightmare NYC celebrates its tenth year in operation, with its second year using the theme Killers. Each year, Nightmare haunted house hosts a different frightening theme — last year’s successful run played host to some of the world’s most horrific serial killers and this year is round two. Journey your way (if you dare) through the worlds of Charles Manson, Aileen Wournos, and Patrick Bateman, along with other notorious killers, and prepare to be in awe of the amazing theatrical performances in each room. For a more frightening experience, opt to have a bloody ‘X’ painted on your forehead, which gives the actors permission to touch you and use you in their performance. Unlike other haunted houses that you can leave rest assured it was all make-believe, this one is based on real life serial killers, so you will leave with the knowledge that these events actually took place, making for a bone-chilling, one-of-a-kind experience!

ghost murder walking tour

Walking Tour Ghosts, Murder, MayhemThis two hour walking tour highlights the historic and haunted past of our beloved New York City. Tours are offered in different neighborhoods and feature haunting tales of ghosts, murder and mysteries, both past and present. These tours are so jam packed with stories you won’t even notice you are walking. Follow your animated, lantern-holding tour guide through dark alleyways, past graveyards and right by some of the city’s oldest buildings, while you hear interesting and terrifying stories, supported with photos and old letters.

Photo credit: KL Thomas

Photo credit: KL Thomas

Pumpkin Pie Show: Boogedy BooThis show is a Halloween inspired performance, bringing real life scenarios into a creepy, but funny, story telling setting. The name itself does the performance no justice as the tales they tell make you rethink a lot of real life situations. Located at Under St. Marks Theater, this small, very “New York” space, makes for the perfect setting for this fun campfire like performance. The three actors are raw, passionate, and quite comedic. The stories they tell are curiously creepy, but they manage to somehow make the audience crack up with laughter throughout the performance. The Hair Extensions tale will have you second guessing just where those gorgeous “real” locks come from, while the mother suffering from Post Partum Depression, will put images in your head that will be hard to forget without a happy movie afterwards. This show is a must see and will put you in that Halloween mood, with tailored songs that fit the stories and keep the fun, creepy, vibe going. -Sara Lehman

halloween harvest

Halloween Harvest: For something that will really take you back to your childhood days, Coney Island’s Luna Park is celebrating the holiday with family friendly weekends, complete with spectacular decorations, costumed characters and pumpkin painting. Additionally, upon entering the park you will be greeted by a giant pumpkin — guess its weight correctly and you could win $1000! They also have fun events each weekend, such as trick or treating, pie eating, and more!