A Candelit Dinner, Plus an Institution in Jazz Since 1968 in Harlem
Whether you live in Harlem or you take the A/C to get there, you’ll feel like a regular at Clay, a favorite neighborhood restaurant. Housed in the former jazz lounge Perk’s, Clay pays homage to the cultural history of its forebears with its inviting ambiance and warmth. One of Clay’s core missives is to be a welcoming place for all, and it shows. The space, with its white-brick exterior and candlelit interior, is chic yet understated, allowing the food and drink to take center stage. Thoughtfully crafted and locally sourced, the dishes—like crispy duck with silky potatoes, or brown butter sea bass with grilled zucchini—are seasonal, experimental, and gratifying. We won’t be surprised if after your first dinner here, you and your sweetie find yourselves back in the neighborhood, and back at Clay.
Just because Clay is no longer a jazz lounge doesn’t mean you can’t throw it on back to the old days. After cozying up at Clay, watch Harlem do jazz the way it does it best at Paris Blues, the oldest live jazz dive in the neighborhood. Opened in 1968 and still managed today by Samuel Hargress Jr., Paris Blues boasts seven nights of old school jazz and blues that keeps the music going until 3 a.m.
553 Manhattan Avenue, Manhattan
163 W 121st Street, Manhattan