2007_05_lido1.jpgLido is somewhat of an enigma along Columbia Street. Unlike the dark hues of B61 across the street, and the low light of Sugarlounge further down the street, Lido’s front windows show all from the street. In fact, the name means a public open-air swimming pool or beach, which probably explains the bare legged women sprawled out on the sign. With nothing to hide, Lido can either seem very empty or one of the hottest places to be in the neighborhood.

The most surprising thing about Lido is how it transforms from a casual, friendly bar with a good jukebox and plenty of space to a packed night spot that feels more like a Williamsburg bar than one on the fringes of Carroll Gardens and Red Hook. The change happens suddenly. We’ve been investigating this transformation as diligently as possible. B61, across the street, seems to grab the happy hour folk, but walk by later in the night and the crowd seems to have moved to Lido. If we had to come with some kind of theory as to why it would have to come down to one fact: Lido tries hard. Whether it’s live music, benefits, or that favorite of late nights, karaoke, we’re always been surprised when we walked in.

Not that the happy hour is something to skip. From 5-8 P.M. all drinks are two for one. And on Sundays you can make your own Bloody Mary for $5 (Choose the clamato juice!). But Lido is all about the space, which it has plenty of. It even has a back garden with a grill which is handy if you remember to bring your own meat.

200 Columbia Street