1125 1st Ave, New York, NY | Directions 1002140.766523 -73.956947
Neighborhoods: Midtown, Upper East Side, Lenox Hill
Won't Go Back Here – I had dinner at Merchants on Saturday evening. I ordered the cod fish and got a plate full of potatoes. There was a small piece of fish sitting on a huge mound of potatoes. My friend order chicken in pesto spaghetti. Her spaghetti was drenched in too much sauce. The ambience and service was very good. I was very disappointed with the food. I would have told the wait staff if anyone had asked me if I enjoyed my meal, but no one asked. I would not go back to this restaurant again.
Best Kept Secret for a romantic rendezvous – I've been to this place twice, once for dinner (had the recommended scallops which were so spectacular and a really tiny portion), and once for dessert (had the apple crumb cake pie and wine at the cigar bar downstairs, very delicious but was lukewarm in the middle). Honestly this place is me and my bf's little kept secret for a romantic late night rendezvous. There are small hidden rooms downstairs and during the weekdays, there's hardly anyone there, you can cuddle up with your Boo in one of the dark rooms and have dessert and wine under candlelight. The service downstairs is great.
Recommendation: skip dinner and head straight for the cigar bar.
Editorial Review by Citysearch Editors – Trendy living room-style lounge and smoking-allowed cigar bar with two fireplaces serves contemporary American cuisine accompanied by live jazz.
terrible – My bf arrived a little early at the restaurant. He picked a seat in the back and specifically told the waiter that he was expecting me. He described how I looked and what I wore. He gave the waiter our names. He also told the waiter that my phone was dead and I did not know where he sat. When I got there, the waiter said "I don't think anybody is waiting for you. But would you like to sit at the bar or go downstairs to the cigar bar while you wait?" So the entire night my bf and I were in the same restaurant but different sections, because of the irresponsible staff. What were they thinking?
I was just there this past weekend for a girlfriend's birthday! I've been there about 5-6 times in the past, and all I can say is that I love it! I've been there with my boyfriend, and groups as well. Overall the food is an 8-9! Menu is limited but with a variety! It's not 4 star, its not meant to be, but a truly great place to drink and eat. Awesome atmosphere! Great place for happy hour as well. Eat at a table by the windows and overlook 1st avenue, or sit in the back in a dark, dim-lit lounge in cushy couches and chairs. VERY TRENDY! Great fro a girl's night out! Everytime I bring someone new there...they LOVE IT!
Potential..... – Went on a Friday night when things should have been happening. Nope, not crowded at all. Place was tastefully furnished and has all the makings of a "hotspot" but I don't thiink that's what they are going for. Cigar bar downstairs, great for smokers. Nice place to catch a few drinks with friends. If you're looking for something a little more energetic, this is not the place.
Seriously. – I used to work here and it's a great place. It's one of the only places in NYC that will still allow smoking so if you hate smoke, DON'T COME HERE. It's common sense. As for no bill splitting, suck it up and do the math yourself. The waiters here have enough to do and they do it well. Maybe some people are just too cheap to pay for more than what they ate.
It STINKS, Literally – Every since the smoking law went into affect I have enjoyed the clean smell of places. Since this is one of the "cigar bars" every smoker in the world is there. It just makes the place stink. Also if you show up in a group, they will NOT let you have separate bills. So there is always the hassle of trying to settle up at the end (and since there are people always coming and going, someone has to take charge. That person ALWAYS gets stiffed). You would think that they would let you have separate bills as long as the were all tabs. I guess the Wait Staff doesn't have the brain cells to handle it.
nice port menu cozy lounge dowstairs live jazz and house great for large groups because of confined side rooms the late night menu is good but the menu overall belongs in fridays not a place that is as nice as this
Merchants is the excellent – Merchants was a very nice restaurant/bar/dance hall. The inside was very well furnished and would definitely get the grouchest person in a good mood. The food is good and reasonable priced. After you are full you can dance the night away.
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