I asked my boyfriend to choose the bars that he wanted to visit while in NYC. After all, he’s a bartender! So he made the following list: PDT, Employees Only, The Dead Rabbit and Apothéke.
All those bars are “speakeasy” bars. For those not familiar with the the word, it means hidden bars, like during the prohibition era.
We only had 4 evenings in NYC, therefore we should visit more than one bar a day if we wanted to stick to the list. I’m a lightweight drinker, so we agreed to visit one bar before dinner and one after, as 2 glasses before dinner would have knocked me down for the rest of the evening.
But guess what? We visited none of them…
The only one we tried to visit was the PDT (Please don’t tell) because I offered him “The PDT cocktail book” last year (very well illustrated by the way).
On our first evening, we walked St Martks Pl up and down for more than one hour before my boyfriend decided himself to ask someone. When we found it (and I agree it was tricky but I will not reveal the place as we didn’t go), it was fully booked for the evening. We were told to try to book for another day. But you can only book the same day from 03:00 pm. And as we were always outside at that time and didn’t have any US sim, we asked our hotel to try to book for us. Unfortunately, they didn’t manage because of the long weekend (Columbus day).
However, we visited others bars: 2 hotel bars that I won’t mentioned because we were offered the drinks (the managers being friends of my boyfriend), a tequila bar called Mayahuel, the rooftop bar of The Standard High Line and the Wise men.
But no speakeasy.
So, on Sunday, our last evening, I was resigned to the idea that we would have to come back to try a speakeasy bar in NYC.
Not as if my boyfriend had a lot to plan… Only the bars… While I planned all the rest…Anyway.
I dressed up for dinner, not really motivated but my boyfriend took the lead (for once!).
We walked less than 5 minutes before we arrived in front of a Japanese bakery and an opened entrance of building with a staircase.
I felt him confused but he took the stairs. On top, we entered in a very cute Japanese restaurant recreating a village, called “Village Yokocho“. Apparently, it wasn’t what he was looking for and a waiter, seeing his face, indicated us a wooden door on the left.
I pushed the door and we arrived in … a speakeasy bar called “Angel’s Part”! I didn’t expect it and I was happy to see that he can still surprise me when he wants.
We didn’t book but were directly seated, which wasn’t the case of all the people who arrived after us.
We asked to be seated at the bar, as we always do, for my boyfriend to observe and sometimes spy the bartenders.
The decoration couldn’t have been further than the Japanese village we just crossed: heavy curtains, a painting of cherubs and old fashioned wallpaper, giving it a rococo touch.
The atmosphere was very relaxed and intimate thanks to 2 rules: no standing and no party of more than 4 people.
I ordered a “Sleepy rum”, a cocktail composed of lavender-infused rum, lemon, egg white and syrup. For the story, the recipe of the lavender-infused rum comes from “Employees only”.
It was a kind of strong cocktail, stronger than the ones I use to drink, but I really liked it because the lavender flavour was pronounced.
I don’t remember what my boyfriend ordered. I think it was a cocktail with Japanese rum.
He also ordered some sashimis as nibbles. I’ve never eaten sashimi before because I was disgusted by the idea of eating raw fish. Somehow, I found them appetizing, tried them and liked them. Like what, tastes change.
Once we have finished our cocktails, we decided to eat at “Village Yokocho”.
The menu was extensive and we ordered a lot of small dishes: miso soup, fried squids, yakitoris, kimchi (I know, Kimchi isn’t Japanese, that’s also what I told to my boyfriend)…
It was the perfect last night in NYC.
PS: When you bring someone to a speakeasy bar or restaurant, try not to mention it and the person with you will be even more surprised!
8 Stuyvesant St
New York, NY 10003