After scaling back its longstanding dress code to permit men without ties, the 21 Club has broken with tradition yet again, opening a new sit-down bar in a space formerly used for diners waiting for tables. Open as a speakeasy and restaurant since 1930, "21" has long attracted guests in search of a classic New York City experience. Now 21 hopes to pull in new clientele with an upscale bar experience. As a contrast to the melange of memorabilia hanging in the main dining area, the cream-colored walls and tastefully displayed Frederic Remington paintings provide an airy feel to the newly renovated space up front. Comfy brick red bar chairs add a splash of color to the mostly neutral tones, and granite bistro tables add an elegant twist on traditional bar furniture.
Bar 21 will be open for lunch Monday through Friday, serving a special bar menu specifically crafted to be more relaxed, affordable and expedient for those who can't indulge in a three-martini lunch. Highlights of the menu include a Sliced Sirloin Sandwich on ciabatta with horseradish sauce and grilled onions served with an iceberg, tomato and blue cheese salad and the intriguing Grilled Shrimp and Oak Lettuces with shaved fennel, radicchio, avocado, pumpkin seeds and pomegranate dressing.
There will also be a special small plates menu available throughout the day with playful interpretations of bar classics like a soft pretzel with jalapeno cheese and buffalo shrimp with a tangy goat cheese dip. The bar will stay open for dinner, with both a bar menu and restaurant menu available. In addition to their spectacular wine list and classic cocktails, Bar 21 will serve draft beer for the first time in the restaurant's 80 year history. Brooklyn Brewery has commemorated this event with a specially brewed copper American Ale, Jack & Charlie's Lager, named for the original owners.
21 West 52nd Street; (212) 582-7200