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Bemelmans Bar?

Heard great things about the Upper Easts Bemelmans Bar being a great "New York" experience anyone have an opinion?

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  1. It's a pretty cool place. The music is great. Go early so you can get a seat. There's a cover at the tables, but at the bar I think it's free or a cheaper cover charge.

    The drinks are classic NY as it the rest of the experience.

    Brought dad here for 60th b-day after dinner at L'Impero everyone loved it. Now I come with friends during the holiday months as it's a warm and cozy kind of place.

    I definintely recommend.

    3 Replies
    1. re: jenniebnyc

      Been a few years but I always loved it... Quiet, dark, romantic and very old New York... You almost "feel" the presence of all the cool people who have frequented the place over the years. I love nostalgia!

      Do they still serve those homemade chips with the cocktails?

      1. re: Michele4466

        Yep, they still have the chips and nuts and that chinese mix.

        1. re: jenniebnyc

          Forgot about all that... that is why I ADORE hotel bars... most have the best snacks :-)

          Did you ever go to the Mayfair on Park Avenue before it closed... They had the nicest bar/tea area... and they also had GREAT snacks.

          The waitstaff/cocktail waitresses were so nice... and you always saw someone famous there, a writer or a dignitary or an actress...

    2. love it. They make cocktails the old fashioned (really, no pun initally intended) way. Whiskey/bourbon sours to die for. Dress eleganly to fit in.

      1 Reply
      1. re: tbear

        Thanks for the input, I just moved to the neighborhood... Might go check it out tonight!

      2. We went after work one day (I think on a Wednesday or Thursday) and loved it. There was no cover and we got a table immediately. It was well worth the cost (I think it was $14 for most cocktails). I wonder how the food is?

        --Sarah

        http://www.avenuefood.com

        3 Replies
        1. re: slynnkiino

          They used to have "Tea with Madeline" during the day there, b/c of the paintings on the walls. So cute. i wonder if thet still do it?

          As for the food...the Carlyle is known for socialite lunching and dinner. This is according to my last read "The Debutante Divorcee", by Plum Sykes. LOL

          1. re: jenniebnyc

            The food is actually very good...high end dining for sure but very good. Service is impeccable, white glove type... though as I mentioned before, it has been a few years... You always felt special dining in that beautiful room...

            We used to run into very interesting people while "hanging" at the Carlyle... I always loved fine hotel bars, all of them.

          2. re: slynnkiino

            they’re doing serious precision salad assembly in that kitchen. everything is cut just perfectly, but the dressing is truly masterful : I’d like to watch the tossing in action, to see them get such a delicate but thorough coating. You will not be disappointed if you order a salad! Liz

          3. Bemelmans bar is wonderful, so New York. There is no cover at the cocktail hour. The piano player starts around 6pm and he is great.
            Go, enjoy, have a drink for me.:-).

            1. I love that place, but nobody mentions the $$$ which could be an issue for most people. Definitely a special-occaision bar.

              1. Agree with everything that was said above. This place is a really great old school new york bar. I am forgetting the woman who created the drink menu and I am not sure that she is there, but the selection is wonderful and the drinks are extremely well made. The booths are very intimate and I love the murals.

                www.kitchencocktails.blogspot.com

                1 Reply
                1. re: gardengirl

                  I think that would be Audrey Sanders, who recently opened Pegu Club on Houston Street (another place for seriously good cocktails). I've heard she and some of the other best mixologists in the city put in time at Bemelman's.

                  --Sarah

                  http://www.avenuefood.com

                2. You are absolutely right, Audrey Sanders is the woman I was thinking about. I actually went to Pegu Club on Friday night. Had the most amazing jasmine, peach, and gin fizz.

                  1. Nothing against the impeccable credientials of Audrey Sanders, but the bar was 100% great before. I think the new owners were keen on modernizing the drink menus to compete with trendy places. My only complaint about the current procedure is that the "up" cocktails have been supersized: bartenders pour your cocktail into a large glass and put the hefty remainder in a little carafe and sit it in crushed ice. That's a whole lot of likker. If I wanted two drinks I'd order two drinks.