9. Gift Shop
Jess Mili had big stilettos to fill when replacing the charmingly irreverent, proudly kinky bar manager known as “H.” While some bars are defined by their patrons, this intimate, 18-seat boîte tucked behind a barbershop has definitely been a reflection of its keeper. Mili, a Civil Liberties alumnus who is known as one of the most hospitable bartenders in the business, took over in early March. She doesn’t plan on changing much: same sci-fi comic-book menus; same obsessive attention to detail; same mix of cocktails (fun originals, classics by legendary bartenders and $100 High Roller Babies) served in whimsical vintage glassware. Vodka, however, is no longer verboten. We imagine there will also be far fewer middle-finger salutes from behind the wood.
TRY: A CLASSIC GIN MARTINI CHILLED TO PRECISELY -4.5°C
Photo: NICK CHOMPS/COURTESY DONNELLY GROUP