At Seamstress, a charming little watering hole at 339 E. 75th Street, the Upper East Side takes an unexpectedly cozy turn.
Imagine a room of dark wood, brown leather, rugs, simple chandeliers of taper ivory candles, exposed brick, and a small wood-burning fireplace filled with the smell of comfort food. It’s like a replica of Santa Claus’s living room.
The crowd ranges from old to young, local to import, and slightly frumpy to full-out glamorous. And while you’re there you’ve got to talk to one of my favorite bartenders in the city, Alan.
It was only Alan’s third day on the job when I met him at Seamstress, but I would follow this bartender to any dingy dive bar at any distance from the city. He surprised me with his version of a Mexican negroni ($15), inspired by his hometown in Guadalajara. As a negroni enthusiast but distant enemy of mezcal, I was skeptical about the beverage. I now order my negronis with mezcal everywhere I go.
The next drink I tried was “The Root of All Fall” ($15), described as “silky and dark” on the menu, made with Elijah Craig bourbon, domaine de canton, pama, lemon, maple, angostura and egg white. Alan spent such noticeable time and focus crafting these drinks that I could nearly taste the effort. The cocktail was comfortably sour, unbelievably smooth and instantly put me in a good mood. It was rich yet not overindulgent. I would recommend it to any whisky lover, bourbon or not.
Seamstress is my ideal cocktail bar — high quality cocktails in an snug, unpretentious bar. Quite the trek from my home in Brooklyn, but I’d make the trip back whenever I had the time. It’s a space for everything from unwinding alone to getting to know a first date.