A hip and colorful destination, Mariachi Bar and Restaurant supplies its guests with everything from dancing to stir fry. Serving a menu of pan-Asian cuisine, the kitchen fries and sautes ribs, rice cakes, and giant octopi for visitors to snack on before they hit the bar for pitchers of beer. Frequent events light up the dance floor, and a nightly happy hour held seven days a week offers specials on drinks and snacks.
Oak Ale House is an eatery divided in half?one side is a sports bar, and the other is an old-fashioned Italian restaurant. Paintings of Italy hang in the latter section, where families crowd long tables piled high with plates of pasta, pizza, and burgers. The menu unfolds to reveal a m?lange of American-Italian staples such as penne in a creamy vodka sauce, and New York strip steaks that sizzle out the national anthem as they?re cooked. Back in the kitchen, ovens bake thick and thin pizzas to a bubbly golden brown, and grills heat up eight types of hamburgers to sate hamburgervores.
Beyond the guarded border dividing the two establishments lies a sports bar, where frothy brews pour from kegs and live music beckons toes to start tapping. The bar also houses seven flat-screen TVs, billiards, darts, and karaoke on select nights.
Masters of impromptu rocking, the three-man band of Particle braids funky undertones of bass guitar with energetic keyboards and drums in an electronic-backed jam session. Bolstered by an underground following and a decade of playing together, the band grooves through hits from its album Launchpad with more chemistry than hydrogen and oxygen had on their first date. The seasoned trio, which has performed with Blackalicious and Grateful Dead founder Phil Lesh, will razzle and dazzle Mexicali Club's intimate lounge after openers Shwizz and The 45's warm up the stage with tunes as catchy as chicken pox.
Three floors, five bars, flashing lights, and thumping bass are the ingredients that make up the tasty cocktail that is SOHO Nightclub. Each floor has its own atmosphere and guests are invited to wander from level to level, sipping drinks and taking in the scene. A male revue and a legion of go-go dancers add sultry moves to the mix on designated evenings. Revelers can relax with bottle service or hookah at tables—the perfect setting for reading a really good book.
If you duck into Samad's Gourmet for a loaf of fresh Mediterranean bread, you might hear footsteps on the ceiling or the strains of soft music rumbling from above. Upstairs, the Heights Bar & Grill is in full swing, as Columbia students and locals chatter animatedly and bartenders dart about, blending frozen margaritas and mixing mojitos. Their faces are illuminated by strings of colorful lights and cooled in the summer by a breeze that drifts in through tall windows. The mood is equally lively on the third-floor roof deck, where guests clink pint-size drinks over overstuffed burritos and mountains of meaty nachos. Others recline on sofas, listening to the hum of the streets or of Broadway below. During winter months, the deck is covered with a retractable roof, shielding patrons from snow and wind.
ReBar celebrates one of the grandest trinities in the American tradition: burgers, beer, and live music. Starting with 10-ounce Angus beef patties, cooks customize burgers to diners' specifications, or whip up one of their own from a succinct list of specialty burgers. Of course, a dish doesn't have to be a slab of beef between bread to make their menu. Cooks also branch out with Southern-style pulled pork and eight-ounce ribeyes, and roasted pork sandwiches with broccoli rabe and sharp provolone. To wash it all down, they turn things over to bartenders, who pour drafts of everything from a selection of 20 craft brews such as Brooklyn Lager and Magic Hat #9 to good ol' Pabst Blue Ribbon. Although ReBar's patio is open for both lunch and dinner, evening meals are often punctuated by musical performances from local bands who enhance the bar's all-American eats with the sounds of wailing electric guitars and rhythms synced to the hoofbeats of Paul Revere's ride.