BAM Cafe

30 Lafayette Ave

The recently remodeled BAM Café on the soaring upper level of the Brooklyn Academy of Music features a large, open dining area, a full bar, urban menu and a great musical space. The ceilings are indeed quite high, and the new arches and fixtures that... more

The recently remodeled BAM Café on the soaring upper level of the Brooklyn Academy of Music features a large, open dining area, a full bar, urban menu and a great musical space. The ceilings are indeed quite high, and the new arches and fixtures that tie the room together are a combination Bauhaus and Art Deco both in design and feel. Some may feel that this room resembles a train station from the age of Empire, a robber-baron space celebrating itself. Yet the openness and towering arches are an apt reflection of what BAM is as an institution and as a place to celebrate the arts. Why limit the possibilities with a low and dimly lit ceiling? Most people who dine here come for the music or for one of the events or films at BAM. It is not a destination-dining spot. But that is no reason to skip it. Make plans to dine before or after an event or a movie. If you are with a group of friends, this is the perfect place to meet for conversation and cocktails. A combination of tables, couches and cushy chairs create both open and intimate spaces, and evoke another time when dinner music and cigarette holders were all the rage. For those who wish to focus on the music at hand, si... more

The recently remodeled BAM Café on the soaring upper level of the Brooklyn Academy of Music features a large, open dining area, a full bar, urban menu and a great musical space. The ceilings are indeed quite high, and the new arches and fixtures that tie the room together are a combination Bauhaus and Art Deco both in design and feel. Some may feel that this room resembles a train station from the age of Empire, a robber-baron space celebrating itself. Yet the openness and towering arches are an apt reflection of what BAM is as an institution and as a place to celebrate the arts. Why limit the possibilities with a low and dimly lit ceiling?

Most people who dine here come for the music or for one of the events or films at BAM. It is not a destination-dining spot. But that is no reason to skip it. Make plans to dine before or after an event or a movie. If you are with a group of friends, this is the perfect place to meet for conversation and cocktails.

A combination of tables, couches and cushy chairs create both open and intimate spaces, and evoke another time when dinner music and cigarette holders were all the rage. For those who wish to focus on the music at hand, sit at the tables close to the musicians. For those who wish to have private conversations, the couches and chairs are a better choice. Let the host know your intentions (e.g., dinner and a movie) before you are marched around the perimeter, or ask about the prix fixe.

Choosing from the menu is easy: The offerings are neither ground-breaking nor extensive. But they don’t need to be. Fussy diners asking for endless substitutions and more and more bread are out of place here. The mood is relaxed. The choices are simple: a pasta dish, lamb, fish, meat and chicken. Try the prix fixe for “Dinner and a Movie” or “Dinner and a Reading”, which for $21 includes appetizer, entrée, dessert and a glass of wine – a great bargain. If you just want a cocktail and a snack, try the tuna tartare or the grilled chipotle shrimp. The selection of wines by the glass could be enhanced, but overall the selections are solid.

The service staff know how to move diners through the prix fixe menu so that they are not late for the show. And there seem to be many of them, almost like a parade at times. Sometimes, it can be a little too much.

Live jazz with no cover on Friday and Saturday nights makes this a popular local hangout.

Downstairs, the BAM Cinema features a variety of films, sometimes exclusive showings that feature a Q & A with the director and cast members.


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Info

30 Lafayette Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11217
(718) 636-4139
Website

Editorial Rating

Category

American (New)

Price

$$$$$

Ambience

Casual

Payment

All Major

This Week's Hours

Thursday – Saturday
5PM to 10PM
special hours for Opera House and Harvey Theatre performances

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