Presenting Black Jack, a black-and-red den of debauchery opening for a one-night charity party tomorrow in advance of its soft-opening late next week.
This is the kind of vintage-y place that Tom Waits would sing about—neon signs, artwork of tattooed women and plenty of smoke. (Okay, so it’s in the food and in your glass, not the air. Don’t quibble.)
You’ll ascend the stairs over the new Pearl Dive Oyster Palace and immediately be confronted with temptations—low seating overlooking 14th Street, a bar with a red velvet curtain and movies projected silently on its exposed brick.
Turn left and stop when you get to the wraparound booth for six (you’ll know it by the bright red upholstery and the images of vinyl records). There, you’ll order up cocktails like the Cigar (mezcal, smoked peach ice) and food like pork belly nachos, Veal Meatball Pie and a different blue plate each night (we like Tuesday: tacos, with a beer and a shot of cheap tequila).
Like most things, this is all just a warm-up for bocce. Specifically, bocce on a regulation court ringed with a chain-link fence and bar stools. Grab one of their 30 canned beers and wait your turn in the rows of reclaimed theater seats from Oklahoma.
Huge bocce state.