Tuesday, June 10, 2014
Jekyll & Hyde Club, NYC
OK, this is a shameless (and uncompensated!) plug for one of my favorite places to dine in New York City, the Jekyll & Hyde Club on W. 44th St. I've been a couple of times now, and it's become a staple of any visit I make into the City. The place has a definitely-theme-park kind of a vibe, but since it's all steampunk Victorian horror, it's a vibe I thoroughly enjoy. This past weekend we went into the City to see a show and grabbed a bite and a drink afterwards at J&H.
My favorite part of the evening was when my daughter, who had never visited, asked me if I knew where the bathroom was. More accurately, it was the expression on her face when I replied, "Go into the Library, find the secret door in the fireplace, go down the hall and find the second secret door in the bookcase." Her puzzled "Is he kidding?" face that slowly morphed into "Cool!" was the best! (Needless to say, she shares a lot of my sensibilities regarding what is "cool.")
The library fireplace, secret entrance to...
...the bathroom hallway. It's down there, somewhere. Not where you think, though.
The food is good, the drinks are excellent, and the staff all seem to be enthusiastic about being there. Expect to have your table visited several times during the evening by various creepy folk, and for various interruptions both human and animatronic. Might be an attempted Frankensteinian revival of a corpse. Might be a visit from the Elephant Man. It's always different.
Whoever decorated the place did a fantastic job. The place is busy, eclectic, and authentic.
The entryway, as seen from the bar landing.
One of the many, many dining alcoves.
There is also a decent little gift and souvenir shop, and an excellent "haunted house" type of attaction which is accessed from the bar. Worth it, but do it before you eat anything. It's extremely, shall we say, atmospheric, and most people are glad of a drink afterwards.
If you do visit, sure, you can walk right into the lobby if you wish and go through the gift shop area into the restaurant. Or, you can approach the doorman in his somber attire and ask for the day's password. You then enter the black British phone box out front, speak the password into the antique telephone, and enter the fun way. Or perhaps "funhouse" way is a better adjective. In any event, go in via the doorman. You've already gone to all the trouble to get there; you might as well go all the way.
The exterior. You can just see the tophatted doorman and the telephone box/secret door.
Don't be afraid to interact with staff. They won't be afraid to interact with you. And if the girl dressed as an undertaker comes to your table with a bucket full of syringes and asks if you want to be injected...do say "Yes, please!"
(As I stated above, I have received absolutely no compensation from the Club. It's simply one of my absolute favorite places in New York City. More information can be found at the club website: