Cafe Tallulah, the cocktail lounge and cafe going into the long-vacant spot on 71st street and Columbus Avenue formerly occupied by the Malaysian restaurant Penang is now slated to open in 2012, a new sign in the window says.
Owner Greg Hunt, who also opened Jerry Seinfeld-hangout Amsterdam Billiards a few decades ago, appears to be going all-out, hiring the architect who designed Mario Batali’s Del Posto and putting together an extensive wine list and menu.
The restaurant will serve small plates like truffle fries and lobster brioche rolls (you know, traditional workingman’s fare) and exotic-sounding dinner specials like Elysian Fields Lamb Sausage. As the spot’s new website says:
The Upper West Side has a lot of great restaurants. Jean-Georges, Bar Boulud, Café Luxembourg, Dovetail, Telepan, and Ouest, just to name a few. But there is not one great cocktail lounge to be found. Not one place dedicated to serving amazing cocktails, great wine, and a great selection of beers, all served in a luxurious lounge setting that makes you feel like you’re sitting in your own living room.
That is about to change.
Introducing Café Tallulah. Following in the tradition of the great cocktail lounges of New York City in the first half of the 20th century, Café Tallulah will offer Upper West Siders a place to unwind that is upscale, cool, sophisticated and casual. Whether it’s before, during or after dinner, you’ll be able to enjoy a specially designed martini, a handcrafted micro brew, a glass of Champagne, and amazing food, while listening to Billie Holiday and Ray Charles playing in the background.
The space has two levels. On the first level will be the main bar, cocktail lounge, and café. On the cellar level there will be a separate bar and cocktail lounge, with a different design and feel. This level will be available for private parties.
To sign up for the opening night party, go to CafeTallulah.com.
Check out other recent local openings and closings here.