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The next time you exit the F train on your way home from a long day of work, consider a detour one-block west to visit our neighbor Laure Travers at the new bar Clandestino.

Clandestino is something our neighborhood has been aching for — a clean, attractive, fairly priced, low-key bar, with friendly and attractive bartenders, and great background music that never overwhelms conversation. They offer a number of beers on tap including a perfectly served Guinness (quality control, no doubt, overseen by Laure's Irish husband, Sean!). They also offer a nice selection of wines including a couple from my preferred regions, Rioja and Côtes de Rhône.

The simple act of opening a bar has been an incredible act of community building. In my several visits I have met numerous SPHC members (men and women alike!). It is incredible to me that SPHC still has no established place for neighbors to meet each other informally aside from the mutually exclusive Men's Club and Ladies' Lounge. Anyone with any interest in fostering a community spirit would do well to come in to ponder the alchemy that can be achieved by providing neighbors with a place to meet! I also met a number of non-SPHC locals the like of whom I have been passively wishing to meet for years.

Clandestino is located at 35 Canal Street, and is open from 7pm to 4am daily. Their website is at www.ClandestinoNYC.com.Clandestino makes a convenient rendez-vous for neighbors hooking up to dine in the neighborhood, and an easy diversion for people looking to break up their tired routines.

I wish Laure great success with Clandestino, and hope to meet many more of our SPHC neighbors there in coming months.

Share YOUR thoughts on this new bar here!