When looking to dip out of the cold, all you really need is the right environs where you can sit back and imbibe. The congenial Bar Next Door makes for an ideal hideout. Nestled in the basement of a restored townhouse, this charming and diminutive bar is enlivened by hanging portraits, flickering candlelight, and cozy black seating. The outside world loses shape with the help of soft live jazz provided by various artists who pass through every weeknight, costing you a worthwhile $5 cover. The menu of drinks is extensive, showing off over 50 specialties—25 are served hot with whipped cream (try the butterscotch-schnapps-laden Nikki Coffee, $8; it’s perfect for dissolving that late-autumn chill). There’s also a shorter and moderately priced wine list (most glasses only cost $8). Plus, if you get hungry, there’s a cheese menu that offers selections that arrive with crusty toasted flatbread, or you can opt to order Tuscan dishes from the attached trattoria, La Lanterna di Vittorio. The season might be getting brisker and more hectic by the minute, but while you’re here, you probably won’t give a damn.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on November 22, 2005