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Raines Law Room

48 W 17th St
New York, NY 10011

A speakeasy that truly embodies the perfect prohibition-era atmosphere. Visitors must find the black awning and walk down a set of stairs to ring the doorbell of this basement level cocktail bar. The back patio is perfect in the summer, and the drinks and service will make you feel like a true jazz age Manhattanite.
The atmosphere at Raines is dim and sophisticated, giving it the appropriate feel at any time of the day, and I've loved stopping by both right after work and late into my night. While they only accept reservations by email on Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday nights, there is rarely a wait during the happy hour scene, and even at the peak of Friday or Saturday night, the host will take your number and call when a space is available. Thankfully they're incredibly consistent, and I've typically just waited at another bar in the area, never for more than an hour.
The drinks are complex, elegant, strong, and favorably less expensive than comparable bars. I tend to enjoy the Spyglass, a champagne cocktail that perfectly imagines the 1920s with Flor de Cana 7-year aged rum, orgeat, and lemon juice, but it would be hard to go wrong here.
What really defines the space, however, is the service. If you're sitting inside, small bells are positioned by each table or group to call a waitress if you're in need of anything (including some popcorn to snack on). Yet Raines is just so perfectly relaxed and refined that I couldn't really imagine ever calling anyone over to complain.
48 W 17th St
New York, NY 10011
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