You may walk by the Little Branch a few times before you realize you’ve found the discreetly marked entrance. And then the doorman may make you wait outside until someone leaves — an indication of just how popular this underground lair is. But get in you must.
When finally admitted, down a steep staircase you creep, past pipes and other basement trappings until you pop out into the dim glow of the intimate boite. The atmosphere here is punctuated by laughter, mellow tunes and the tantalizing ice rattling of cocktail shakers. Nattily attired bartenders serve up expertly crafted classic cocktails like French 75 and Vieux Carré with panache. Can’t decide? Just let them know your flavor mood and you’ll get a custom creation. Gourmet ice for rocks drinks is hand cut here to fit the glass.
Little Branch was opened in 2005 by New York City’s cocktail pioneer Sasha Petraske. Jazz trios perform late night Sundays-Thursdays.
Your closest thing to a true Prohibition-era speakeasy experience.
22 7th Ave. S., New York, NY 10014