The Cloister Cafe

(212) 777-9128 | View Website

238 E 9th Street, New York, NY | Directions   10003

40.729338 -73.987845

Open Hours

Mon-Sun 10am-3am

Breakfast, Brunch, Date Spot  more

More Tags: Late Night Dining, Lunch Spot, Outdoor Dining, People Watching

Cuisine: Italian

Categories: Restaurants

Neighborhoods: East Village, Downtown


From The Owners of The Cloister Cafe

Enjoy classic Italian dishes in a lush, vibrant outdoor garden in the heart of the city.

Three Eggs any style, Steak & Three Eggs any style, Grilled Kippers & Three Eggs any style, Farmers' Omelet, Latino Omelet, Western Omelet, Nova & Cream Cheese Omelet, Eggs Benedict, Eggs Florentine, Huevos Rancheros... more

Reviews for The Cloister Cafe

1 month ago

The rose hookah is pretty good.

2 months ago

Adorable spot. Love it!!!! Smoking hookah at a cloister. What a genius idea.

3 months ago

Best place for conversation. I ALWAYS enjoy the conversations I have there...there's really something about Cloister. It always leaves me happy! Haha.

3 months ago

Fittingly, the decor inside Cloister matches what you would expect to see at a church. The pleasantly sacrilegious ambiance for smoking hookah and drinking fine wine adds to your inebriating experience.

Cloister is a term ingrained in the Catholic church, if you're curious regarding it's meaning, check out Wikipedia. I'm here to preach, not to teach.

The pride and joy of CC though is the outdoor garden. When the weather is warm and the vineyard has grape leaves draping over slivers of sunlight, you forget that you're still in New York. The ambiance is amazing and the patrons can be very pleasant, even striking up a conversation with your table.

The pricing is often ridiculous, and sometimes when our lovely waitress brings us "shots on the house" I swear we've had them show up on our bill. This adds to the charm albeit stings the first two times you see the bill. It's very European how they handle their business, complete with real Russian waitresses!

So yea, Catholic stain glass, Mediterranean garden, New American cuisine, Turkish Hookah and Russian staff. It's not ideal, in fact it's all over the place in terms of brand identity. Given that I'm a regular, they treat me a little better than a first timer (My real rating for this spot would be a 4 by the way, but I want to counterbalance the bad ratings)

On a wintery night, I came here with a friend, we were both sick and we asked them to make us honey mulled wine, they did it. They charged us whatever they wanted because it's not a standard menu item, but the fact remains, they do care about their regulars. Like many places in NY, you have to know when to come and when to avoid this spot.

Some tips if you want to have a good time:

- Come during warmer weather and sit in the garden.

- Start drinking here, continue at your club/lounge. Not the other way around.

- Order a pitcher (or 2) of Sangria rather than drinks for groups smaller than 4

- Order Hookah with a mix, always keep one part leafy (Mint, Jasmine) with one part smooth (Vanilla, Apple, Coffee).

- Practice self control when ordering shots.

If you follow these steps, you'll have a good time

4 months ago

I have been to many hookah bars, this is bar far one of my favorite! Attentive staff, good price, great atmosphere, and fair priced drinks

6 months ago

Restful music and relaxing atmosphere. Good food. It had been many years since we were here and did not realize the outside garden was now a hookah lounge. We were square and ate indoors to avoid the smoke. Our server was friendly but overworked and slow. Still, we enjoyed it.

7 months ago

I've been here many a times, and I know I'll keep coming back.

I love this place, but, my experience here always varies. Sometimes, when the stars align and they seat you in a nice section, the hookah is strong enough and the waiter is kind enough to keep changing the coals, I have a great time.

It has character, it has good hookah ($20 per hookah) and a nice vibe. The music is upbeat and their hookah flavor list is extensive. You can even mix flavors! The drawbacks are that some areas of the place are nicer than others, the service itself can vary from good to terrible, you have to keep buying drinks to for them to keep changing the coals, and they limit one hookah per four people. Also, the food is expensive, but hey, that shouldn't be what you go here for.

Overall, this is a good go to place for hookah that you might find yourself returning to.

8 months ago

The Metropolitan Museum of Art houses its medieval collection of art work at the Cloisters, just north of the MMA, about a15 minute drive, with lots of parking. In

addition to paintings, there are wood carvings and medieval furniture. There are also lovely gardens with fountains to wander through. The building itself is a replica of a cloister that might have been found in Europe during the 1300-1500's. There is an especially beautiful carving of Jesus riding on a donkey. Allow two hours...time well spent. This attraction is free if you previously visited the Metroplitan Museum of Art. Lots of stairs so wear good walking shoes.

8 months ago

Pretty decent place for hookah, or just to grab a couple of drinks. The outdoor garden is pretty awesome, and they have Pilsner Urquell on tap. The staff (especially the hosts) tend to be a bit standoffish for some reason, but this isn't a huge problem.

8 months ago

Been coming here for years...but within the past few months the service has really dwindled.

Yay for the outdoor patio and yay for the hookah, but the service is fairly poor. Waited almost 20 minutes for our margaritas and the place wasn't even busy.

Willing to give it a few more shots though, lets work it out Cloisters!

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