It’s a busy week on the Lower East Side bar scene: While Hair of the Dog, a new watering hole on Rivington Street, has been drawing a lot of press for its opening tonight, another venue a few blocks away has been gearing up for its inaugural party as well.
Leftfield has been running in “soft open” status since quietly taking over the embattled UC Lounge space at 87 Ludlow St. in August. The new nightlife spot officially kicks off at 7 p.m. tonight with live music, food and drink specials, said partner John McCloskey, who was on hand last night overseeing preparations. McCloskey and his partners, who also own Northern Soul Bar in Hoboken, N.J., have made some improvements to the L-shaped space, replacing the marble bar with reclaimed pine and generally sprucing it up. There is full bar service and a good selection of craft beers on tap.
The cozy front bar opens up into a bigger room with a live music stage in the back. There is also a lower level with an additional 18-foot bar. The new owners’ application for a liquor license for the downstairs bar received a green light from Community Board 3 in September; approval from state regulators is pending.