A new bar has the cozy feel of a ski lodge right in the middle of Manhattan. Zagat editor Kelly Dobkin filed the following report.
Hudson Lodge, the newest Midtown hotspot inside the now 12-year-old Hudson Hotel, is the latest in the trend of indoor/outdoor rooftop bars that also includes competitors Haven and Conosur.
"The idea for Hudson Lodge came up when we had the private park space empty and we really made it into almost a winter wonderland in the middle of the hotel," says Alan Philips, the Morgans Hotel Group's vice president of food and beverage. "If you really want to escape the city, it’s the perfect place to come to experience the best of what the holiday season and the winter season has to offer in Manhattan."
The menu and walk-up counter service style stands feature items like the Nutella grilled cheese, playful takes on both sweet and savory fondue and a house-made brisket chili topped with Fritos.
"I’ve always loved really, really salty things and really sweet things and I think when you bring together salt and sweet and you throw a little fat into the mix, it becomes really the most delectable, incredible items," says Philips.
The indoor/outdoor space features a rustic, chalet-inspired vibe complete with oversized furry chairs, taxidermy and other ski-themed details.
"There's sleds throughout the space, there's oversized planters, there's 30-feet ceilings," says Philips. "It really takes you a ski resort in, let's say, Aspen or Mont Tremblant or those exotic ski locations that you might never get to but you can find right here."
Perhaps the most unique element of Hudson Lodge that ties the theme together is the real-life snow show that goes down every night at 8 p.m.
"When you're here at around 8 o'clock every night, we decided to make it snow. We have snow machines that make snow appear from the sky from like 30 feet up," says Philips. "It’s incredible, the reaction we've gotten from our guests. People start giggling like children. It's a special experience, it's a New York experience and it's a Hudson experience."
For more information on Hudson Lodge and other new restaurants, visit blog.zagat.com.