67 Orange St (Harlem NYC) Review

Owner Karl Franz. Photo by Benjamin Norman for the NY Times
  67 Orange St is inspired by Almack’s Dance Hall, which was located at that address in the 1840’s and was one of the first black owned and operated bars in New York City. This is Karl Franz Williams uptown answer to the haven of cocktail bars located below 14th st.  

Atmosphere/Decor After walking through the doors and past the velvet curtains you walk into a cozy bar. It is ideal for a low key date or to catch up with friends but is not great for groups. With classic hip hop and R&B tunes playing in the background and the soft lightening you can’t help but settle in. There’s also a downstairs section with intimate romantic seating but it usually doesn’t open up until about two hours after opening.  

Service  Service is attentive with servers and bartenders willing to engage in conversation. The owner is frequently there as well and is engaging and available to answer any questions.  

Drinks The menu is broken up by spirit  with an option to suit every taste. The Hedonist is a delightful mix of rum, gentian, orgeat, curry, bitters and ginger beer. It’s light and refreshing with exotic flavors dancing harmoniously on your taste buds. The Honey Maker is the perfect beer-tail for warm summer nights. There is no question that many of their drinks are of high quality and well thought out. There are a few minor pet peeves I have. For example, one of the drinks we ordered, that was served up had ice chards floating in the drink. For aesthetic reasons and to prevent additional and unwanted dilution these should be strained out. My second issue is that some of the drinks appear to contain one or two unneeded ingredients that do not add anything to the overall flavor profile of the drink. In cocktails sometimes simpler is better because too many ingredients can muddle the overall flavor profile of the final drink.   

Food The food is some of the best that I have had a craft cocktail bar. The jerk wings are spicy and flavorful without setting your mouth on fire. The truffle and parm fries are some of the best I have had in the city. The shredded unmelted Parmesan cheese looks a little weird at first but it somehow works with the truffle oil and hot fries. The  lobster and shrimp Mac and Cheese is decadent and creamy and they don’t cheat you on the seafood.  

Overall Frankly it’s sad that after all this time and the current cocktail Renaissance that 67 Orange is the lone uptown cocktail bar. It has been open for 6 years, so it is clear that it has a proven track record of delivering a consistent prouduct. While it may not be as big or as flashy as its downtown counterparts it produces some worthy cocktails and excellent food selections. There are a few little things that I mentioned in this post that can truly help this bar to compete Karl Fran Williams favorite downtown haunts like Death & Co. and PDT.  67 Orange Street 2082 Frederick Douglass Blvd. New York, NY 10026 Phone: 212-662-2030


One thought on “67 Orange St (Harlem NYC) Review

  1. I love to frequent black owned establishments. This one i enjoyed. I had the mac and cheese, which was delicious. It would be nice if they could acquire local and fresh produce. Some NYC public schools have school gardens that would love to make a community connection. I will return again and again!

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