Willow Billiards arms pros and beginners with chalked cues for two hours of 8-ball action paired with delicious brews. More than 10 new Brunswick Gold Crown III tables and two antique Peter Vitalie Lord Nelson tables cushion stricken balls with a half-dozen cozy pockets. Lined with 14 brass-rimmed stools, a fully stocked mahogany bar stretches for 22 feet and decants drafts (up to $5 each). Willow Billiards flanks its libation station and abundance of tables with an exposed brick interior ornamented with mahogany wood and illumined by brass and onyx lamps. Tournaments occupy numerous tables on Tuesday and Wednesday nights, so customers should take the limited availability into consideration on those evenings.
Ranked No. 2 in Billiards Digest's 2010 Best New Room hierarchy, Society Billiards + Bar combines 19 top-grade pool tables with a bar full of favorite tonics. Overhead lights serenely illumine custom-made Diamond tables and their players, capturing the ambiance of a classic pool hall while filtering out the blinding smoke and oldfangled harpsichord music. Dueling duos get two hours to flatten the felt with rousing games of 8-ball, 9-ball, and 18-ball pickup while toasting to improbable shots with a quenching quartet of beers from taps dispensing favorites such as Blue Moon, Stella Artois, and Brooklyn Lager. Society Billiards + Bar remains open until 3 a.m. Sundays–Thursdays and 4 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays, facilitating late-night sipping and cue fencing.
One harbors certain expectations when entering a jazz club in New York City. A list of classic cocktails is a must, and it goes without saying that smooth, soulful music should be playing at all times. A night at Fat Cat might prove to be a jarring experience in light of such expectations. Cocktails and jazz are certainly well represented, but the club’s patrons eschew hushed reverence. Any musicians who take the stage must be prepared to compete with the clacking of billiard balls and the cheers that break out during foosball games. Fortunately, they are so talented that they nearly always win out. After their sets, they might even join in on lively games of backgammon, chess, and “Who Wants to Pay the Bar Tab?”.
Tropical 128 is an escape from the dreary urban jungle to a vibrant, tropically themed nightclub. The festive and eye-grabbing neon lines, palm fronds, and skylights all make this the perfect place to reenergize after a long week. Tropical 128 boasts rows of pool tables and a tiki bar that’s stocked bursting with liquors known and obscure that enable them to put together some of the best drinks in town. The atmosphere at Tropical 128 is up-class without being imposing, just regular urbanites looking to improve their pool game over a couple of drinks and some friendly chatter. Visitors are encouraged to check out the exotic fish tank, which contains colorful tropical varieties from all over the globe.
It’s not easy opening a restaurant and lounge that stands out in NYC, but the Big Apple’s Slate manages to do just that. The interior design of this establishment is the perfect marriage of sleekness and functionality. With their large, comfortable sofas, squishy plush chairs, and spacious lounge area, everything about Slate encourages socialization. Slate also features a surreptitiously hidden VIP lounge and dining area called the Studio, which is soundproofed and completely detachable from the main lounge, perfect for some private, late-night revelry. There’s something for everyone at Slate, with ping pong and foosball tables in the basement and a dance floor upstairs.