Lounge 47 47-10 Vernon Boulevard
Long Island City, Queens
Once a desolate neighborhood, industrial in landscape and melancholy in personality, Long Island City has catapulted from just another zip code in Queens to a bona fide place to liveand even hang out in. (Plus, it's only 10 minutes from Manhattan.) Walk down Vernon Boulevard, which has the potential of turning into what Smith Street in Brooklyn was before all the hipsters took over, and into the newly opened Lounge 47. The seven-week-old, retro-looking bar, decorated with panels of '70s-style wallpaper and vintage tables and couches, caters to locals, who happen to stumble in from one of the two high-rises nearby. On a recent "mojito night" it was clear that the bar was still quite young as evidenced by the weak, flavorless theme drink ($6). Since the waitress was kind enough to change it to a cabernet ($5), without charging extra, we'll excuse their Cuban faux pas. Plus, they're still creating the cocktail menu, so let's hope they work out the kinks. The food menu, though, was a tasty mix of tapas and bar fare (especially yummy was the mini-shepherd's pie, $4.50). We'll be back when they've settled in a bit more, hopefully before it gets colderthe real draw here is the huge outdoor courtyard in the back, where thoughts of moving to Queens may occur. You've been warned.