Walking into Tainted Lady Lounge, with its glitter-filled, pinup-plastered walls, is like stepping into a more elegant, glamorous era. The slightly naughty atmosphere is both sexy and cozy. Your eyes are assaulted by attention-grabbing bare-breasted art culled from owner Deb Parker’s (Barmacy, Beauty Bar) collection.
Perhaps because it’s a short walk from the subway, though located on burgeoning Grand Street, Tainted Lady lures a mix of bikers, dykes, and artists, with the fewest possible stereotypical hipsters, and hosts events such as a weekly baby-friendly storytelling happy hour for parents, an all-girl roller-derby benefit, and vintage-lingerie fashion shows. Sit by the bar and ogle the wall of photos of misshapen boobs and enjoy $3 Budweisers and mid-priced cocktails such as margaritas and Alabama slammers; for the adventuresome, channel your favorite tainted lady, a/k/a the zombie (three kinds of rum, brandy, sugar, and fruit juices; $7) or the Marlene Dietrich-inspired Blue Champagne (blue curaçao and champagne; $6).
The eclectic jukebox, filled with female vocalists from Tammy Wynette to Gal Costa, adds ambience, while the sensual, laid-back vibe and no-pressure waitstaff make it a perfect date spot.