City Pulse

By Razi Schwartz

I have a confession to make: I found an amazing place on the Upper West Side, and I’ve been keeping it under wraps… until now. I don’t know the last time y’all were on the UWS, but…the quaint and fabulous “I’d actually treck from other places in the city to go there” kinda joints are lacking. I mean, there are some great restaurants, but…name one good wine bar, for example. Right challenging, no? I mean, one could in theory drink wine at the few nice restaurants that exist up there, but there is no fab place to go. SoHo and the West Village won that sparring match, and the UWS was left with zilch in my most humble of opinions.

Bin 71, the best new treasure above 69th street, heard the cries and answered the call. Located on Columbus Avenue at 71st Street (in between the chinese restaurant and the lingerie store), the place is the size of a walk-in closet. Actually, there are probably some people in Manhattan who have larger closets than Bin 71, which very much adds to its charm, if you ask me. There is one community table, one tiny bar with some stools around it, and a few more scattered stools along the perimeter. That’s it. It’s first come first serve seating, which is why I like to try to get there early because I’m not a fan of standing room only.

So, other than the tres chic ambiance and super hip vibe, why do I love Bin 71? First of all, the selection of wines is outstanding. The prices range from very reasonable according to New York standards (i.e. $8 per glass) to the glasses that should only be reserved for the true oenophile and connoisseur. They also have an exceptional selection of beers on tap, served ice cold, and…here’s my favorite part…served in the appropriate glass for the beer being served. So, if you order a Bitburger, your beer will be served in a Bitburger glass. That is a level of class you just don’t see that often anymore.

The kicker here is, they have AMAZING food, as well. The guys who own the joint used to work at ‘Cesca before they left to open this little jewel. The chicken Panini is to die for, as are the meatballs, the steak, the figs with prociutto and mascarpone cheese…oy, now I’m getting hungry writing this. Basically, everything I’ve tried on the menu is superb. And they’re open for lunch and brunch if you’re looking for an alternative to Sarabeth’s. I’m soooooo over the Sarabeth’s craze – we’re moving on up, people!

The bartenders are fabulous – Danielle, Jessie, and Andi are all dolls and you’ll love them. The only thing that’s annoying is, like I said before, it’s a tight squeeze so it can be hit-or-miss as to whether there will actually be enough room for you to squeeze through the door.

But I promise, it’s very much worth it.

Bin 71, 237 Columbus Ave at 71st St. 212-362-5446

Luxe For Less:
Molton Brown Announces Their First Ever Luxury Sale

Molton Brown, the brand synonymous with luxury, is holding their first ever luxury home and travel accessories sale. From Mongolian cashmere robes and throws to Peruvian alpaca travel blankets, bronzed porcelain candles to double-fired hand painted glassware, Molton Brown’s coveted home and travel range can be had at 30%-80% off, from November 25th to December 9th, available exclusively at the Molton Brown Emporia in New York City.

Highlights from the range include:

The Nepalese Robe – Whisper light, yet wonderfully warm during a cool midnight breeze, this robe is named in honor of the craftsmen that hand weave it. First, it is designed with an outer layer of high altitude Himalayan cashmere and then lined with sinfully smooth silk to cool the skin during hot weather heat. Original price $900. Sale price $349.

Cosmopolitan – This luxurious, handcrafted, Italian leather weekend bag is the essential travel companion. Interior and exterior pockets make packing easy. Security is maximized with kissing zippers and a leather-covered padlock. The internal strap and clasp mechanism keep everything in place. Complete with a durable studded base and drawstring dust bag, this bag is all you need for the modern jet set lifestyle. Original price $575. Sale price $229.

The Mongolian Traveler – The ultimate in comfort on the move, this jersey knit bolster is made from the purest cashmere of goats from eastern Mongolia and spun into cloth almost immediately. Supremely light and uniquely soft, it can be used as a pillow or throw to ensure your warmth and well being in any environment. Original price $700. Sale price $359.

Can’t wait to get your hands on these goodies and shop from a huge selection of Molton Brown Fall 05 merchandise, can you? Well here’s where you’ll want to be:

Molton Brown Emporium
515 Madison Avenue
212.755.7194

Molton Brown Emporium
1098 Third Avenue
212.744.6430

For more on Molton Brown go to http://www.moltonbrown.co.uk/us.

Hot Mamas and Mamas to be: This is YOUR kinda sale. Check out the Liz Lange boutique located at 958 Madison Avenue and enjoy fantastic markdowns up to 40% off on the Fall 05 Collection.

Starting on Tuesday November 22nd and ongoing until the fall merchandise is gone.

Liz Lange Manhattan – 958 Madison (between 75th and 76th Streets) NYC – 212.879.2191 – 10am-7pm
and Liz Lange Long Island – 210 Wheatley Plaza – Greenvale – 516.484.7268 – 10am-6pm
also, if you’re in the LA area…
Liz Lange Beverly Hills – 346 North Beverly Drive – Beverly Hills – 310.273.0099 – 10am-6pm

Originally published November 2005
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