“Hipster’s delight!” “Great find!” “Only in New York!” These are just three of many quotations describing the East Village men’s stylist The Blind Barber. Haircuts, shaves, and trims are offered here as standard, but there’s more to this place than meets the eye. We’ve booked you an appointment! It’s time to visit NYC’s barbershop with a twist.
The Blind Barber comes across as unassuming at first sight. Located at 339 East 10th Street, it’s nestled between an authentic Northern Italian restaurant and a cafe. The quaint shop front is punctuated with the lettering “Barber Shop” and a traditional whirling barber’s pole. Nothing out of the ordinary. Step inside to find a neat little boutique with white exposed brick walls. Top-tier grooming products — The Blind Barber’s own luxurious brand of balms, shampoos, and conditioners — pepper the walls, while high-end clippers and scissors hang from hooks. You’re already warming to this place.
No matter who your barber turns out to be, you won’t be disappointed. Be it Justin, Julien, Jason, Jeremy, or Dylan, they’ll put you at ease with their suave manners and sharp looks — fingers crossed they can make you look just as gentlemanly. Once you’ve discussed your styling needs (the first hint that this is no ordinary East Village barber), you’re offered a shot of tequila to sip while you’re being styled, pampered, and treated like a prince. You could get used to this.
The Big Reveal
The Blind Barber is named for a John Dickson Carr whodunit of that name, published in 1934. And in the tradition of such bourbon-infused escapades, so this NYC barbershop turns out to be attached to a speakeasy. Once you have your new look, the staff might well direct you to a back wall, behind which lies a dimly lit bar that oozes Jazz Age decadence. Pull up a stool and order a Blood Simple (a heady elixir of Aylesbury Duck Vodka, blood orange, allspice, and cider) or a Thieving Magpie (Mizu Shochu mixed with sour guava cordial, cacao, charcoal, and soda). Bet you’re glad you didn’t hurry back to your rental apartment, now.
Make a Night of It
You needn’t be a perfectly groomed gent to get in, nor do you need to preface your visit to this bar with a haircut. The Blind Barber’s back parlor is open six days a week to anyone who enjoys a good cocktail — with the party going on until 4 am. Between the expertly mixed cocktails and forays onto the dance floor, you can keep your energy up with pizza from next-door neighbor Gnocco. We’d recommend the Affumicata (made with smoked mozzarella and Italian sausage) or the Quattro Formaggi. And it would be rude not to try the Ciocolatto, which is smothered with Nutella and strawberries. Finally, in the wee small hours, after returning to your East Village apartment, you can check the mirror and admire the results of your 12-hour haircut.