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« Sunday, May 16th, 2010—Bar 126 | Main | Friday, May 14th, 2010—Bar 124 »

Saturday, May 15th, 2010—Bar 125

Day 125—Friday, May 14th, 2010

Okay, there are some nights I’m really looking forward to leaving work and hitting the old bar crawl and meeting people and having a few drinks. There are other nights where I’m a little tired and it feels like a bit of a chore, but usually when I get to the bar that feeling goes away and I have a good time. Then there are the few nights I really don’t feel like doing this at all. Tonight is one of those rare nights. It was a crazy night at work, I have a headache and I have to work Saturday and Sunday and I didn’t even have time to take a dinner break or plan a bar to go to tonight. And yes, I know, I haven’t even entered a bar yet and already I’m filled with whine. Wah, wah, waaaah! And so I’m going to take the walk down Fifth Avenue towards home and stop at the first bar I see. Time to crawl.

Okay, here we are, the corner of 5th and 29th, time to find a bar and get this over with.

Been there, done that.

Ilili restaurant, maybe there's a bar in here, let's check it out.

Leah the lovely hostess assures me that there is and waves me in. (Little known fact that isn't obvious from the photo, Leah is over seven feet tall!)

Whoops, looks like I've wandered into the restaurant area. Looks nice, but I'm walking into bars, not dining areas.

Okay, here we go, this bar looks great. Low-lit and low-key, perfect after a crazy work day like I had.

And bartender Adam has the key to making the crawl something I'm grateful for...

A bottle of Brooklyn Brown. I'm feeling better already and I'm back into bar crawl mode!

There's a lounge area adjacent to the bar. Let's see who these people are.

It's Julie, C.B., Paige and Fred who were relaxing with drinks and enjoying some appetizers on this Friday evening.

Back at the bar a couple has arrived, time to meet them.

It's Katy and Brian. Both are we designers. Katy works for the NY Daily News, which gave the 365 bar crawl decent publicity a bit ago, thanks again to Simone Weichselbaum for writing that feature. Brian works for Huge Ink, check them out here: Huge Ink.

Some of the top shelf liquors at Ilili bar.

Fire! (It never gets old for me!)

I asked Adam what the most popular drink in the bar was and he told me it was the Phoenician Lemonade, which he expertly mixes here.

And it's delicious! I had a good time on the crawl after all! Thanks to Adam and everyone at Ilili for turning my mood around. Okay, I gotta work tomorrow, so time to drink up and go home. Goodnight everybody!

Ilili is an upscale Lebanese restaurant with a Mediterranean menu that is eclectic and sounds like a treat to the taste buds. The restaurant is spacious and modern, but I’m walking into bars, not restaurants, so I spent my time in the bar area, where the full menu is available. the bar is sleek and modern with low lighting creating a romantic and casual mood. The bartenders are friendly and the crowd moves from business people stopping in for happy hour specials to locals enjoying the specialty cocktails and imported beers.

There are seven bottled beers available at the bar imported from Spain, Lebanon and Holland among other continents. If you want to drink local you can sip on a Brooklyn Brown. Some of the specialty cocktails include The Lebanese American made with Massaya Arak, Bourbon, Ginger and Fresh Mint, Sharab Al Toot, a mixture made with Inocente Tequila, Mulberry Syrup and Lime Juice and the delicious Phoenican Lemonade which consists of Citrus Vodka, Orange Liqueur, Mint, Lemon and Orange Blossom Water. Happy Hour runs from 5:30 pm to 7:30 pm Monday through Friday with five dollar beers and seven buck cocktails and a small bite menu featuring Hommus, Kabis, Marinated Sardines and Lamb Ribs. The extensive Mediterranean menu features hot, cold and sharing items including: Baba Ghannouj, Falafel, Beef Fried Kibbeh, Veal Sweetbreads and a Lebanese Burger.

In addition to the restaurant and bar, there’s a lounge area and a DJ spins tunes on weekends. A unique bar and dining experience in the Murray Hill area. It turned my bad mood good, so check it out!

236 Fifth Ave. (Near 27th St.)

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Reader Comments (13)

Those cocktails sound delightful! I could easily picture myself enjoying a few...and those rotten pink oompa loompas waiting for me to finish my third so they can come and get me...waiting...just waiting...

May 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJaws the Cabbie

Looks like just the laid back place you needed to unwind. I agree with Jaws, the cocktails sound great, speaking of which, it's Saturday, cocktail time!

May 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterBarfly

That Adam guy is hot! I could get quite drunk sitting looking at him.

May 15, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterkari

Brooklyn Brown, one of my all-time favorites! Haven't seen it here in CA.

May 15, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterspotcolors

i agree with kari! and the fire bit always cracks me up, i dont know why! LOL!

May 15, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterrita r.

Cool joint!
We will tag up over the weekend.
Going to see The Handcuffs tonight.
Will pass on your well wishes.

Pee Ess...
At least you have a job.
(remember that line?)

May 15, 2010 | Unregistered Commenter"Boris"

7' tall OMG i would have stop drinkin' right there NOT
even when down uh how exactly d you know Dick Stolley

May 15, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterraginrr

@raginrr: Ha ha ha! I'll never tell! Are you an editor at Time, Inc?

May 15, 2010 | Registered Commenter365 Beers

just another firetruck of sorts

May 16, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterraginrr

@raginrr: Thanks for buying and reading the book!

May 16, 2010 | Registered Commenter365 Beers

Wow! Look at all those tequilas behind Adam! Hey, did you know that the dude from Paul Mitchell hair products owns Don Julio? True story. Joan Rivers told me that on How'd You Get So Rich on TVLand. But I digress. I'm usually not a huge fan of Meditterranean food, but the menu seems just interesting enough that I might give it a whirl. I'd for sure give the cocktails a try. I think mint in a drink is da bomb. Word.

May 17, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterBiff

7 feet tall ! woow! I think I'm only 4.9 and I guess if I crash into her in a crowded street, I should bang my head in her knee! haha

Wow llili featurs beer from Lebanon as well, that is so very cool. That looks like a wonderful restaurant and bar and I love Lebanese and Mediterranean foods.

Adam is a cutie and the patrons look so sweet and like they were having a good time there. Thank you for profiling this wonderful looking establishment on your website. Looks like fun to me ~

May 17, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterTiki Bar Susie

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