NYC Opening: Wicker Park

by Clubplanet
08.21.2006

-Jeff Wilser

wicker-park.jpg

It happens. Sometimes, like it or not, you're forced to hit the Upper East Side. Maybe your date lives on 80th street, so you're pulling the whole "bar-near-her-place-so-you-can-walk-her-home" trick. Maybe you're on the way back from a Yankees game. Or maybe you, um, live there.

Good news. Next time you're stuck in the fratland of Upper Epsilon Sigma, you have a new go-to safety valve: Wicker Park (1469 3rd Ave. at 83rd St).

With its classy mahogany bar and grown-up-looking tables (this ain't Brother Jimmy's), Wicker's vibe is understated without being stuffy. Daring and inventive? Maybe not. But it works.

Creators Frank "Elvis" Falesto and Chris Coco (of McFaddens renown) have a thing for delivering hipper-than-expected venues in not-so-hip neighborhoods. See Butterfield 8, another Coco project.

The grub? Forget greasy burgers. With bistro-style presentation, they serve American Continental diet-busters like "filet mignon sliders," little mini-me steaks served on toasted buns. For brunch (noon-4pm on weekends), chef Terry White (Delfrisco's Steak House) has created hangover-friendly fare like cinnamon apple pancakes and smoked salmon omelets.

wicker-park-cocktail.jpg

After tenish, the restaurant morphs into bar mode, complete with Upper East Side-friendly music (read: serviceable but boring--80s and classic rock, no hip-hop, no dance).

The booze? "The Wicker" (Boru Crazzberry Vodka, cranberry, mint leaves, 7UP) headlines a cocktail menu that includes girly-but-yummy drinks like the Peach Martini and Celtic Lemonade.

Expect a ratio of two cute girls for every one guy in khakis. And for this neighborhood, that's about as good as it gets.

Wicker Park
1469 3rd Ave at 83rd St
212.734.5600
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