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Quiet, Low Key Bars in Manhattan conducive to conversation

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Hello all -

As I've re-entered the dating scene in Manhattan recently, I'm interested to know if people could recommend a well-lighted, quiet bar in Manhattan (midtown east, midtown west, or anywhere downtown) that is conducive to conservation.

I've picked some bars that advertised themselves as low-key but when there on a first date, the background music was quite loud, and being hearing-impaired, made it much more difficult to understand my date and made for some obvious awkward moments that I would prefer to avoid in the future.

Any rec's would be much appreciated.

Thanks in advance!

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  1. Irish bars and pubs would seem to fit the bill as long as it's not soccer season.

    1. pegu club
      little branch (on non jazz nights)
      b-flat
      bemmelmans

        1. Sunita's, without question. it's a small bar on Norfolk bet. Delancey and Rivington. despite the LES locale, the crowd is mostly 30+. try the Jalapeno Passionfruit Martini...it's hot.

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          Sunita
          106 Norfolk St, New York, NY 10002

          1 Reply
          1. re: coasts

            Seconding Sunita - its an awesome bar with great drinks and a non-scene scene (i may be demographically more like the regulars at other LES places but this is my number one spot when conversation and good cocktails). Ive been there on plenty of saturday nights when there were maybe 6 other patrons and even when its been "crowded" its never difficult to hear other people without raising your voice. I was hesitant to recommend it only because i enjoy how easy it is to slip in without worrying about crowds and would hate to see it get too popular and change that.

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            Sunita
            106 Norfolk St, New York, NY 10002

            1. re: filmbomb

              Temple Bar, King Cole Bar

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              King Cole Bar
              2 E 55th St, New York, NY 10022

              1. re: bronwen

                I love Temple Bar, but it is the opposite of well-lighted. I think a hotel bar would be a good bet - I recently had a nice early evening cocktail experience at Salon Millesime (although it probably gets louder as the night progresses).

                http://www.carltonhotelny.com/ameniti...

            2. The bar in the way back of Patroon's is wonderful. Guenther makes killer Martini's. It's a perfect hideaway.
              www.shrinkinthekitchen.com