Neighborhood MOst Desperately in Need of Some Gay Nightlife (2010)

Upper West Side

Did the gays stop their northern migration once they hit Hell's Kitchen? Did they simply run out of cab fare once they reached the wonderland of bars like Vlada and Therapy? The Upper West Side seems sadly free of them, except for the ones who turn up at the long-running Candle Bar (309 Amsterdam Avenue, 212-874-9155), a lone rest stop in the wilderness and hardly dazzling enough to light up the whole neighborhood. It's one of the strange realities of Gotham living that there aren't more gay bars up there, due to a kind of reverse evolution that's hampered the UWS from redeveloping into complete greatness. And there's no good reason for it! Surely, the area that brings you Lincoln Center and Lincoln Plaza Cinemas should teem with opera/theater/film queens jonesing for get-together dives where they can loosen up over Jello shots. A haunting reminder of past glories and scandals: the Ansonia (2107 Broadway) once housed the Continental baths, where Bette Midler rose to fame as toweled gays cheered. Now it's a much blander building where any gays who happen to be there wear lots of layers. Come back, gays!


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