Mel and I headed down to Dip, on 3rd Avenue between 29th and 30th Streets for the previously mentioned surprise party. Dip is mostly a bar, although they also have a nice selection of fondue, hence the name (which Mel had to point out because I’m too stupid to pick up on such things… Sure, sure, name your bar “Liquor Here” and I’ll be laughing for hours, but name it something non-dirty and I’ll stare blankly.).
Happy hour included $5 apple martinis, so we helped ourselves to a couple of those and gathered round Phil, Emily & co-worker Mireia, who managed to get seats (bless their hearts, as native/long-time New Yorkers, Phil and Emily really know what’s important in a bar…. a place to sit).
The party itself was a huge success – Lynn was completely shocked and surprised and it was well-worth the trip to see her have fun. The bar itself was a bit on the loud side, but not terribly so. The musical selection was…. odd I guess. There was a strange mix of new music along with older stuff… like Michael Jackson’s “Man in the Mirror.” Huh? Yeah, I have no idea.
There were a number of waitresses floating about and it was easy to grab one and get some food off the bar menu. We ordered chicken quesadillas (kessadillers to you Napolean Dynamite fans) but found that we were still hungry. After a five minute discussion on the power and the glory of cheese, it was agreed that we needed some fondue. The giant pot of bubbly Swiss cheese came quickly and was quite yummy. I personally would have preferred more bread and less icky broccoli, but on the whole, quite good.
As the night progressed, Mel and I decided to accompany Phil and Emily downtown to Zerza, a Moroccan restaurant on 6th Street, just around the corner from Second Avenue. Unfortunately, I was not hungry, so I didn’t eat anything there. The food looked really appetizing though. We had a couple of bottles of wine from Algeria called Medea, which I quite liked. And the atmosphere of Zerza was more to my liking than Dip – not surprisingly, Dip had a large after-work crowd and a lot of twenty-somethings out having fun. Zerza was more low-key and the lanterns, tiles, bellydancer and music made me nostalgic for my trip to Marakesh back in aughty-aught. Also, the waitstaff of Zerza was ridiculous friendly. Two thumbs up.
Mel and I stumbled back uptown to our jail cell at 2am, with enough wine to dull the cold and enough apple tobacco from the hookah to make the room smell less like feet. The following day as we trudged back to the car, Mel remarked, “Now I’m not so sure which is worse – driving back at night or in the morning.” Well, it may not have been fun on Saturday morning, but it was a jolly good Friday night.