The original Elsa closed in Alphabet City in 2014: a sad loss. But finally, after more than a year of home-hunting, here it is on Brooklyn’s Atlantic Avenue.
Elsa is allegedly named after fashion icon Elsa Schiaparelli, who was (according to The Met) known for her “iconoclastic bravado” and “brazen originality”. Although the Elsa in bar form isn’t exactly brazen, it’s certainly a suitable homage to the fashionista.
A neon sign in the window marks the bar’s entrance, while the inside space assumes a more glamorous identity. The mirrored back bar is decorated with metal patterns, crystal lights hang like stalactites from the ceiling and candles in millennial pink holders flicker on every table. The shiny brass-topped bar is lined with visitors come 6pm on a Friday and no, you’re not dreaming, those beers really are being poured through a vintage sewing machine. There are comfortable leather banquettes and marble tables covered with menus, drinks and snacks. The art deco space is approachable as well as ultra-cool.
The menu contains more than 20 signature cocktails, along with a range of seasonal creations. Each sounds like the perfect drink so close your eyes and choose at random, remembering that here’s no such thing as too sweet. We’re promised frozen rosé with watermelon and a plant-strewn, candle-lit patio out the back when the weather heats up. If you need me on a balmy Friday evening, you know where to find me.
Elsa, 136 Atlantic Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11201
Photo: Hannah Hoskins.