The Garret is a speakeasy in the sense that it’s hard to locate. To get there, you walk into the Five Guys at 7th and Bleecker, then find a hidden staircase in the back. Upstairs, there’s a casual cocktail bar with a few skylights and some windows looking out on the street. It isn’t as stuffy or expensive as some other cocktail bars, but it does get busy, and they play top-40 just a little too loud. It might feel more like college bar than expect, but it’s a good place to bring someone who’ll be impressed by a place hidden above a burger joint.
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4 Charles Prime Rib
4 Charles Prime Rib is an underground West Village steakhouse that should be approached with reckless intent. This is not a place to eat a salad.
The West Village location of Spicy Moon is one of the best vegan restaurants in the area.
Lifethyme Natural Market
Your vegan yoga teacher shops at LifeThyme, and that's not a bad thing. It’s a reliable place to get a juice or do some healthy-ish grocery shopping.
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Sauced is a Williamsburg wine bar that feels like a mildly hectic house party with cheese, charcuterie, and a disco ball.
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Zaragoza is a longstanding Mexican deli in the East Village where you can get a couple of tacos, tamarind candy, and a jar of green enchilada sauce.
These days, Employees Only is not the hotspot it once was. But while the crowd might have lost a step, the cocktails have not, and it’s still packed with people every time we stop by.
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