Bring a date to Straylight, and you’ll seem like the kind of person who knows all the after-hours parties and who probably has a lot of secrets. It’s the subterranean cocktail bar under Juku - an izakaya and omakase restaurant in Chinatown. To get in, you walk into a bare hallway on a nondescript street and down a bright white stairwell with pink fluorescent lights. Once inside the small space with a ceiling that looks like stained glass, you can order cocktails with ingredients like sushi rice and smoked pork skin, and small plates like very good meatball sliders on Japanese milk bread. If you’re okay spending $20 on cocktails, then Straylight is a unique spot to impress someone.
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Nom Wah Tea Parlor is very simply an excellent place to eat some good dim sum and have a little fun. There’s a reason they’ve been around since 1920.
Pho Bar is a casual Vietnamese restaurant in Chinatown that’s great for a bowl of very rich beef pho by yourself or with a date.
Deluxe Green Bo
Deluxe Green Bo is a cash-only spot in Chinatown that makes great soup dumplings.
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All observations about the clientele aside, Nobu 57 is still a pretty damn good meal. It’s hard not to love those classic dishes, as long as you can swallow the hefty price tag.
Blue Ribbon Sushi Izakaya
Blue Ribbon Sushi Izakaya on the Lower East Side is an ideal destination for impressing a big group of sushi, meat, or veggie-loving friends.
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The Flower Shop
The Flower Shop is a restaurant on the LES with a 1970′s theme and a basement bar where you can drink amongst attractive people.
Kind Regards is a bi-level LES bar where you can actually sit and have a conversation. Unless it’s the weekend - in which case it will be crowded.
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