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Mar 21, 2007 05:21 AM

230 5th - good/bad reviews?

I keep hearing about 230 5th and am wondering what everyone thinks about it - I am out of the NY restaurant scene but hope to come in this weekend with my SO, have dinner, and then head there for after dinner drinks - what kind of crowd goes there? Are desserts nice? Thanks-

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  1. I think the crowd depends on the day. I've been on a Tuesday and mostly suits getting drinks after work. We've been on Thrusday and it was pretty busy - line out the door to get up to the bar with a mixed crowd. Of course weekends are pretty busy too. I like it b/c it is not pretentious, sometimes the cocktail waitresses can be slow. Sorry, but I can't comment on the food - never had any. It's annoying when it is too crowded, but since there is no cover, it won't hurt to head up, check it out and head back down if it doesn't suit you.

    1 Reply
    1. re: FIFO22

      I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE 230 5th. The down-stairs area is a bit heinous, but the rooftop is breathtaking and very worth the wait.
      I've never had the food there, but you can't lose with dessert! The scene is beautiful people, period.

    2. The view is very nice, especially at night, but don't go on the weekend. I went there on a Friday and found frat boys dancing on the benches. My feet were stomped on by staggering girls in stilettos, who later shoved me from behind to crowd onto the elevator on the way back down. On weekdays, the atmosphere is much more relaxed, with suits as FIFO22 mentioned.

      Haven't had the food or desserts and found drinks to be a little overpriced, which is fine for a rooftop bar. But avoid the weekend crowd.

      Although downstairs area is heinous, as LFeinberg said, it's so over-the-top cheesy that it's almost fun. And you might run into a few randomly placed stuffed zebras on the rooftop area.

      1. The place is tacky but wonderful. Be sure to go look at the enormous, pink velvet Lagerfeld sofa that's on "display" in the middle of the indoor part of the club. The views are spectacular. It reminds me of a more intimate Windows on the World. We had my office Xmas party here, so I can't really judge the general crowd because I was surrounded by 500 of my wonderful co-workers, but the Malaysian inspired food was good for appetizers/bar snacks. It's not earth shattering stuff. The desserts were excellent. The one thing to be aware of ahead of time is that they don't have glassware, they use non-disposable plastic, like picnic-ware. I'm a wine drinker, and wine does not taste the same out of plastic. They claim it's because drunk people have a tendency to throw things off rooves...which gives you an indication of the kind of crowd they expect. Definitely go and have a drink, though.

        6 Replies
        1. re: ballulah

          Hmm...not quite what I was thinking - is there a more upscale sort of place (no party/weekend/club girls/stilletos kind of places) that also has a rooftop bar? We'll be on the upper east side during the day and then dinner is up in the air but I was hoping to end the evening with drinks on a (fairly quiet) rooftop somewhere - especially if the weather is nice - doesn't have to be in that exact area - thanks-

          1. re: sushieat

            Plunge at the Gansevoort Hotel in the Meatpacking District? Although this place was originally owned and designed by the same guy who owns 230 Fifth.

            The Cabana at the Maritime Hotel is rather nice, not too far from the Gansevoort.

            The Rainbow Room, but it doesn't have outdoor space.

            This article is a tad dated and may not feature newer places, but it's still fairly accurate...

            1. re: ballulah

              Rainbow room of the 3 above probably fall higher on the classy scale - Gansevoort is 10x worse than 230 5th I think.

              Cabana room is great but they start charging a cover on the weekend after 10 or so and crowd is still the same as Gansevoort.

              Stone Rose is nice too - view of Central Park and Columbus Circle. In the Time Warner Center. They have fondue which will be good for dessert. I'd reserve a table though then you can avoid drunken girls in stilettos spilling their over priced martinis on you.

            2. re: sushieat

              I think on the weekends, EVERY place is filled with jersey girls and b&t spiky-hair boys, it's pretty unavoidable. That said, the Gansevoort and 230 Fifth are both nice bars, though the drinks are pricey. Just ignore the crowd and try really hard to snag a table somewhere. As Ballulah mentions, the Maritime Hotel bar is nice too, maybe less chaotic, and there's another outdoorsy place called Park in the same area.

              1. re: janethepain

                I'd like to add that the rooftop area at 230 Fifth is enormous, and I would imagine it would be fairly easy to order drinks and find a place to sit and enjoy the view away from the crowds. It gets very crowded at the entrance, it's bottlenecking from people waiting to go outside/come back the bar is immediately next to it. If you go left and up a few stairs the seating area expands, and you have an uninterrupted view of downtown as well as the Empire State Building.

              2. re: sushieat

                the peninsula hotel has a nice rooftop bar. drinks are expensive but well made.

            3. 60 Thompson has a nice rooftop. Classier crowd.
              Agree with the comment about 230 having a huge roof - you should be find a quiet corner. The view is ridiculous.