We stopped by La Bodega 47 Social Club this week in Harlem the night of the pouring rain/snow storm and were pleasantly surprised and relieved when we walked through the red velvet drapes into the welcoming, warm space. Due to weather, and the fact that La Bodega are still in their soft opening until early March, there were just a few patrons at the bar. However, owner Brian Washington- Palmer along with Harlem Park to Park’s Nikoa Evans Hendricks arrived shortly afterwards. And we were happy to speak with Brian about what to expect of La Bodega.
We sampled several tasty rum-based drinks which warmed us up nicely. That warmth was further reinforced by the decor which was dark, cozy, inviting as well as visually interesting. The old school floating lamps added a fun and unique touch to the atmosphere. We had hoped to sample the food, but the kitchen will open during the official opening period which is expected in March (for details see the Press Release below). Many of the planned dishes sound tasty.
To top it all off, the staff was friendly and knowledgeable about and interested in the neighborhood.
Just below is a photo of the back wall in La Bodega which looks like a shelf full of stacked produce which you would find in any local Bodega. Or is it? You will have to stop in to see for yourself.
Big thumbs up to the fun and innovative chic and kitsch design.
La Bodega 47 Social Club 161 Lenox Ave, New York, NY 10026
Hours 5:00 pm to 3:00 am
LA BODEGA 47 SOCIAL CLUB TO OPEN IN HARLEM
The Newest Venture from Uptown Restaurant and Nightlife Impresario
Brian Washington- Palmer
Harlem, NY – January 22, 2014 — Harlem’s nightlife will go up another notch next month with the opening of its newest bar and late night eatery, La Bodega 47 Social Club. Brian Washington-Palmer, the uptown nightlife and restaurant pioneer and owner of such acclaimed hotspots as Bleu Evolution, the Monkey Room, No Parking and Native, will open the upscale bar and lounge on the corner of 118th and Lenox, adding to Harlem’s ever-expanding entertainment scene and to Lenox Avenue’s growing nightlife venues.
The Latin- and Carribean-inspired La Bodega is a rum craft mixology concept that will feature cocktails skillfully created with a well-curated global collection of the finest rums from the Diaspora including Guyana, Venezuela, Jamaica, Trinadad, Nicaragua, Guatemala, Haiti, Dominican Republic, Brazil, West Indies, as well as local craft brands from New York. It will open initially with drinks only, but eventually include a Latin infused menu from Palmer-Washington, a chef who was at the helm of the kitchens in all of his previous ventures.
La Bodega’s design and concept is based on the beloved New York City institution of the bodega, the “corner store” used for smaller grocery items, a gathering place, and an opportunity to satisfy a craving — salty, sweet or of the alcohol variety. The social club is a continuation of a conversation that began with Washington-Palmer’s journey as a NY nightlife and restaurant impresario, from his Lower Eastside days, to his many Washington Heights ventures, to Harlem’s Native and now La Bodega. It is lounge and a social meeting place with an eclectic, multicultural groove that will finally give Harlem a go-to bar that is as conceptual and upscale as it is welcoming and neighborly.
The bodega influence is carried throughout the project, from the exterior, echoing the look and feel of a traditional bodega, with bright awnings and creative lighting, to interior design elements that also include references to the bodega motif coupled with a neutral palette of warm tones against design elements of wood, metal, glass, lucite and ecological materials like cork.
Washington-Palmer designed the overall space and concept and the vision is executed by designer William Rohlfing, a scenic and interior design specialist with clients like Steven Miesel, 40 Acres and a Mule, BET, Universal Pictures, Apple, Saks Fifth Avenue, Macys, and Victorias Secret, among others. Central to the design is the bar that creates a cohesive feeling to the room for maximum opportunities for interaction. Dramatic lighting along with a customized playlist of Latin, House, World and other global-themed lounge music round off the atmosphere for a cool and eclectic vibe.
Hours of operation: 5 pm to 3 am M-Sun