We have some standby places to grab a drink after a long day, but our favorite new cocktail bar is in an unlikely neighborhood.
Chrystie Street’s Experimental Cocktail Club is the brainchild of three French friends with tastes for well-made drinks and Belle Époque nostalgia. Following the success of their Paris and London locations, the trio’s New York outpost is modeled after Manhattan classics like the Monkey Bar and Bemelmans.
The crowd skews young, but the Club is a throwback to old New York with pressed-tin ceilings, bartenders clad in suspenders and a selection of extremely aged libations from the 1960s. Gin drinkers should try the Experience No. 2, a citrusy martini made with lemon juice and basil ($14); gents will like the Kelpie’s Julep ($14), a spicy-smoky concoction made with cocoa-nib-steeped Scotch and Sichuan-pepper syrup. If you’re thirsting for something more experimental, order the fizzy L’Américain, made with artichoke-infused vermouth, walnut-flavored Campari and carbonated thyme water.
There’s no phone number to call for reservations, but email firstname.lastname@example.org and a host will confirm your table (walk-ins are also welcome). Come for the cocktails but stay for Scotch eggs and meat-and-cheese plates from London import Fat Radish.
Experimental Cocktail Club Lower East Side, 191 Chrystie St. (between Stanton and Rivington sts.); experimentalcocktailclubny.com