Features NY Life — 16 October 2015
FiDi’s Lot 77 Space Gets Revamped with Dual Purpose

LOT 77
77 Fulton Street at Gold Street, Financial District
Getting There: 2,3,4,5,A,C,J,Z to Fulton Street

By day the sizable downtown space is a coffee shop and a comfortable café. By night, the dart boards and foosball tables become occupied and the place becomes a full-on game room and gastropub. The setting inside of Fulton Street’s Lot 77 is one that evokes a walk down memory lane, to the days of studying inside of a communal collegiate lounge of sorts. Except here, ice cold beer and glasses of wine are also poured and the Asian-inspired menu offers a bevy of tasty menu items.

Though the entrance at Lot 77 is a bit hidden if you aren’t looking for it, the dearth of bars and pubs in the surrounding area makes the place certainly one worth seeking out. A sure-fire good time for area residents, Lot 77 is distinctive for all that it offers- for that overly competitive friend who’s a gaming fan, a sprawling setup for non-drinkers looking to unwind and a quiet and comfortable place to grab a coffee and study or freelance without the nuisances that can often come with more popular public places.

A recent downtown visit brought us to the Lott 77 entryway, which opens up into a massive café serving pastries and coffees- well lit up and with plenty of tables and seats for folks to camp out for a couple of hours. The offering of free WiFi on site only adds to the already welcoming atmosphere, with some light music being piped in overhead as the variety of coffee drinks are carefully being prepared. As day changes to night though, gone are the ceramic mugs and in their place, come the clanking of glasses, the smashing of pool balls and a bevy of far louder activity. Guests slug down pours of suds and refreshing alcoholic drinks courtesy of the place’s frozen drink machine as they dig into a fairly complex menu.

Items like “Sambal Cheese Dip with Pretzel Bread & Pickles” ($7) and a “Spicy Tuna, Radish & Sesame” Ssam ($15) are particularly distinctive standouts- but considering that the space isn’t a ‘bar’ in a traditional sense, it’s fitting that the menu here would be particularly unique. Moreover, the “Wings” (1/2 pound – $9) here are particularly tasty, lacquered in a smattering of fish sauce, garlic and lime and served with a miso-buttermilk ranch on the side. The meaty and juicy wings were intensely flavorful, though candidly, the savory “5-Spice Beef Sliders” ($9) topped with a creamy Szechuan aioli and a pickled cucumber was likely the best dish that we sampled- washing each hearty bite down with a slug from a Corona bottle.

On a relatively slow weeknight in New York City, finding ourselves in a place that’s part restaurant, part café and part lounge proved particularly fulfilling. Though we can’t toss a dart to save our lives, there were plenty of other things going on at Lot 77 to keep us both occupied and entertained at all times. Spacious and casual, it’s a useful space that provides guests with a multitude of different options- with or without booze.

- Alex Corrine

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