Mr. Purple is Redefining the NYC Rooftop Bar

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Forget labels.

Opposite of me there is a couple, friends, what have you. One sports a poofy hairdo with blond tips, and the other a high-n-tight cut with a dad cap. They share a twine corner table for lack of space, one sitting on the other’s lap, both smiling, carrying Tecates and sipping with leisure.

Across the room, an expansive couch section remains unoccupied. It’s reserved for VIP clientele, presumptive influencers who smile into their Instagram feed to sway even more urbanites to pack themselves 2-by-2 on twine corner tables.

IMG_1156You enter on the fifteenth floor. Limpid light enters into a room that’s surrounded by scenic metal. To the South is Fidi, East is Brooklyn, West is Soho. But here you are in the Lower East Side. This isn’t just another rooftop; Mr. Purple is a rooftop redefined.

Post industrial lighting dangles like lanterns in an ore mine, no, more like fluorescent jellyfish in the deep sea. Rooftops are usually appreciated from the outside, and Mr. Purple doesn’t disappoint.

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They took time however, to decorate the interior. Ropes strung across the ceiling like vines in a canopy. And this is what I mean when I say that they are redefining the rooftop.

An NYC rooftop is made up of expensive drinks, tourists, faux artists, and a general NYC classist malaise. Mr. Purple traverses this tight rope, by I think, one factor alone said three times…Location, location, location. Amid the Attaboys, Bar Gotos, and Nightcaps, there are some heavy hitters in the cocktail scene. And by being nearby, it attracts the people who frequent these bars, and who just have something different in mind for the night.

It must be said that Mr. Purple does flirt with all of these rooftop features. It is pricey, it does have some tourists, and it does host some judgey looks as you pass, but it also goes beyond these features.

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You’ll see tinder dates, meet ups, old friends and sorority sisters, Argentinian newcomers, French bankers, skinny and plus sized models, the director, cast and crew– and if you get lucky, maybe you’ll see Mr. Purple.

No, not really, unless you count the bar manager standing over there with his arms crossed. Mr. Purple actually derives its name from Adam Purple, a controversial gardener who constructed New York’s Garden of Eden nearby. This glossy rooftop bar is supposed to pay homage, but paradoxically does the opposite, by ‘standing for’ exactly what Mr. Purple opposed. Urban expansion.

The drinks:

They have a line of what I like to call “specialty” drinks, which are cocktails particular to a bar. I took the Barrel of Monkeys, while my gf ordered the eponymous drink, Mr. Purple.

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Barrel of Monkeys: Banana Infused Jameson Black Barrel, Bayou Select Rum, Fresh Pineapple, Lemon Juice, Cinnamon, Cardamom

Mr. Purple: Casamigos Reposado Tequila, Cranberry Liqueur, Allspice Dram, Apple, Lemon. served punch style

Both drinks were meh, but I was still delighted by their extensive specialty menu. And delighted to drink in the view as much as the cocktail.

Con Amor,

Alexander Cohiba

Insta: @mrpurplenyc