Welcome: At a time when the general trend is brevity (monosyllabic names) and well-timed table turnover ("Is there anything else I can get for you?"), the whole concept of Epistrophy flies in the face of marketing surveys and Small Business Association advice. This inspired venue is much like the song for which it is named – an improvisational creation not afraid to go where the spirit takes it. Like Thelonious Monk, owners Luca Fadda and Giorgia Zedda are doing something that at first seems too esoteric to be popular. Upon second look, this place is just what the artist ordered.
The façade: The first challenge is to spot the discreet storefront, which consists of a vast expanse of windows inviting one to peep inside to see what is going on. Go ahead and peep. Everything about this place says: Come in, have a glass of wine, let’s chat. The understated portal – itself a fully-windowed, tea parlor door –opens outward and the visitor is directed inward.
The Muses Speak: Still building its chops, Epistrophy approaches the café scene from a countryside-meets-nouvelle Bohème-meets wine bar point of view. Sit, discuss, muse, drink. Reminiscent of Madrid’s art cafes, where locals, pundits, students and the rest discuss the world and its philosophies, Epistrophy attempts to bring to Nolita a venue where conversation is not about shouting over the thump-thump-buzz of piped in bass-beat music.
Bacchus (or Liber Pater) says: Drink more Italian wine. These peninsular Italian selections are enthusiastically poured by beings of striking beauty. After a dizzying day of meetings, seminars and battling tops, it is nice to be greeted by a character from a Caravaggio painting, who hands you a goblet of wine and offers you cheese & fruit. And you won’t have to pay that much for it.
What’s for Dinner? We are all waiting to see what happens with the menu. At the moment, it is inspired by the rustic; cheese and fruit plates, salads and crostini. Upcoming changes to the menu promise to highlight the flavors of Sardinia.
Expect to find cozy banquettes, inviting vibe, attractive staff and guests, and a lot of great Italian wine.
This is a place to watch.
Telephone: (212) 966-0904
Address: 200 Mott Street
Cross Streets Spring & Kenmare Streets
Hours And Additional Info
Price: Expensive. About $31 to $50 per person.
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