Valentine’s Day in the East Village
Valentine’s Day is almost here, and the East Village is teeming with endless date possibilities. EVGB’s East Village luxury rentals put you and your loved one close to the best romantic spots in this storied NYC neighborhood. So, head out for some fine food, stylish tippling, a relaxing constitutional, and then see where the evening takes you…
Before or after dinner, take that special someone by the hand and stroll among the famous elms at Tompkins Square Park. While not Valentine’s Day-specific, it is a peaceful place to stop and contemplate love on a grander scale. This is also true of the park’s other notable feature: the Temperance Fountain. Adorned with a statue of Hebe, Greek goddess of youth and cupbearer to the gods and goddesses of Mount Olympus, this fountain was originally erected to provide clean drinking water to the people of the neighborhood.
Put temperance aside, and ease into the evening with a cocktail or two at The Belfry. Enjoy an Apple-Jax, a sweet, citrusy, and frothy concoction made with applejack, egg white, and lime juice; or try a Fig Mood, of white rum, ruby port wine, fig jam, Curaçao, and lime. Or, on this sweetest of days, indulge your sour side with pickles to eat… and to drink. Try the Classic with Irish whiskey and sour or spicy brine, or a playful Tickleback of mezcal and chipotle sour brine. For those who want to experience the extreme end of this fusion, a Piñaback blends tequila and pickled pineapple brine for a deeply sweet and sour experience. A carefully curated selection of choice wines and draft beers are also available, but trust us when we say that the mixers are where the fun is when you’re at The Belfry.
Of course, for a more complete selection of vino, oenophiles and their dates should seek out a table at Ruffian. Lauded by Esquire as “one of the best bars in America” and praised by New York Times critic Pete Wells as “one of the most adventurous and rewarding wine bars in town,” Ruffian offers an eclectic, Eurocentric food menu, a wine list of more than 250 different bottles, over 30 wines by the glass, and draft or bottled beer that complements the menu just as faithfully as their offering of varietals. Located in a space formerly owned by William B. Astor, Ruffian is light but intimate with its brick terracotta tile and an ogee-arched window and door. Do note that they don’t accept reservations, so with seating for only 20 and standing room to accommodate just four, there may be a wait. Arrive early and spend the extra moments gazing into one another’s eyes.
However, if you prefer not to go without being assured of a table, Lavagna will gladly book you one. Traditional Italian trattoria fare is what’s on the menu in this lively, though cozy, candlelit space where the open kitchen, wood-burning oven, and exposed brick make for an invitingly warm place to bring a date. Using fresh, seasonal ingredients, Lavagna offers comforting Italian dishes that feature homemade pastas, as well as roasted meats from the wood oven, like fish for two or a roast pork chop. Enjoy vintages from a wine list that has been a yearly recipient of Wine Spectator’s Award of Excellence since 2002; or cocktails made with small-batch bourbons and ryes; single malts; or handcrafted grappa, amari, and digestifs. Don’t know where to start? Order a chianti and select the rigatoni with sweet and spicy sausage — a dish that has become a classic at Lavagna. And with good reason: It’s delicious.
The way to a truly romantic evening is just beyond the doorstep of the East Village rentals at EVGB. Toast to love with the goddess Hebe, share a feast of sumptuous Italian cuisine, or get a little tipsy together with creative cocktails and handcrafted spirits. No matter how you choose to spend the evening, the East Village is assuredly the place to be.
Happy Valentine’s Day!