Dear HEAT, What's Hot?

Dear HEAT,

We are:
Three New York guys are taking out three girls from philly who are visiting for the weekend. Only one of us has met one of the girls, so the other 4 people involved have never met each other.

We want:
Neighborhood downtown on the westside
Price range either cheap and chic or the appearence of high roller with out spending too much $$
Somewhere nearby to keep the cocktails flowing!

What's HOT?
Wilfe and Nell: 228 W. 4th St., nr. Seventh Ave.

West Village gastropub with surprisingly good food, great drinks and solid beer selection. It's almost always bumping with a good crowd and has long wood communal tables, perfect for your party size. It's just noisy enough to drown out those awkward pauses and definitely encourages a party atmosphere. Plus the Philly girls can feel at home with the cheese steak's Irish cousin: the corned beef sandwich. Covered in gruyere cheese and served with THE BEST pickles from a neighboring borough, it's a sure thing. It's also located on a great block for post dinner drinks if you want a change of scenery after dinner. There's a nice cocktail bar across the street that is usually spewing with people as well as a fun tequila lounge called Diable Royale, where you MUST get their house drink: the Ricky. 1/4 frozen margarita, 3/4 mexican beer. Goodnight!

Keste Pizza e Vino: 271 Bleecker St., near Morton

Out of towners almost always come to NYC looking for a good slice - if you want to make a night of it, this is the place. It gets a young, west village crowd looking for carafe's of good wine and gourmet pizza. Your choices run from your basic Margharita with grape tomatoes, fresh buffalo mozzarella, basil and extra virgin olive oil, to a little more off the run options like the Pizza de Papa: butternut squash cream, imported smoked mozzarella, and artichokes. It's small and lively - which means there's normally a crowd waiting to sit, so make sure to have a reservation. Grab a beer afterwards at Vol de Nuit, a Belgian beer lounge found in an old carriage house, with an outdoor courtyard and multiple bars: 148 W. 4th at 6th Ave.

Or for a taste of home, take the girls to THE Philadelphia Eagles bar: Town Tavern, but dont tell them I sent you.
Floriencia 13: 185 Sullivan St., near Bleeker St

Nothing breaks down the barriers quite like tequila. If you need another reason to go, the food is pretty legit as well. Mexican food with a Californian flare means you wont feel like a complete glutton when you leave. They also play a good soundtrack and lure a fun crowd. My choice for after dinner drinks would be Little Branch, a speakeasy on Leroy St and 7th ave that specializes in fantastic cocktails and live jazz music. If you're looking for something a little more lively and a little less classy, The Back Fence will suit the bill. Just dirty enough to allow the full effects of the tequila to come through, it's a red neck inspired bar with raging music that you'll find just down the street: 155 Bleeker St

Some more food for thought:

Otto Enoteca Pizzeria: another pizza option by Mario Batali, caters to large crowds
Alta: small plate Italian
Barbuto: classic italian
BLT Burger: b/c who doesnt love a good burger
Extra Virgin: American fare with a Mediterranean twist - great neighborhood, good crowd

- The HEAT


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