The speakeasy trend has exploded in New York City with spots like Milk & Honey, Dutch Kills in Long Island City, Queens, the Clover Club, the Bourgeois Pig and several others, but it's the Raines Law Room that expanded the trend to a rather obscure stretch of the Flatiron District near Union Square. And unlike many of the speakeasies which have turned people off with pretentious airs and terrible service, what Raines Law Room gets right is the old school, vintage, glamorous look. Raines boasts a pressed tin ceiling, exposed brick, authentic vintage trunks and books, dappled leather couches and low-backed armchairs. And detailed wallpapering on some of the walls creates an elegant, old time feel without seeming ironic or phony. The space manages one other important thing: it never feels too hectic or too crowded, which is why you're waiting outside freezing your ass off.
What Raines Law Room and the speakeasy trend reflect is a growing taste for cocktails, which is exactly what Raines Law Room specializes in. Where other spots pride themselves on nouveau cocktails, Raines Law Room focuses on the old time standards with a few specials such as the Smoke and Mirrors, the Gold Rush, the Old Cuban and a Manhattan made with Rittenhouse rye. Their menu is a tad pricey, as cocktails run between $13-19 and bottles of wine go for $48-$175. However, you get what you pay for, in terms of quality ingredients and service.
By now you know that Raines Law Room is a popular spot and difficult to get in to- on the weekends an hour long wait is not unheard of. Which is why we were so excited to hear that Raines decided to start taking reservations for Sundays, Mondays and Tuesdays. All you need to do is send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org before 3:00pm with the time you'll be there, the number of your party and a contact number. They'll confirm with either a call or an email. If you're set on stopping by from wends-sat, we suggest arriving early and wearing a really warm coat.
GetWize: In true speakeasy style, The Raines Law Room got its name from an American liquor law passed in the 1880's. Raines is located at 48 West 17th Street (between 5th and 6th).