As I'm still clueless about NYC, I used Citysearch, which I've found very reliable for finding good event venues in unfamiliar cities, to find my 25th birthday celebration destination -- Orchid Lounge. Our 10:00 p arrival was perfect; we were just in time to snag the one unreserved bench. Orchid was filled with birthday parties, which I managed to poach some nice boys from!
The atmosphere was great, relaxed and elegant with an Asian aesthetic, and their drink list was very inventive and reasonably priced. Every time they ring the gong behind the bar you get free shots (in little glasses that look suspiciously like communion cups). After all the shots and drinks, I can't remember the names of my drinks, but I highly recommend the pineapple/vanilla vodka and coconut vodka/basil seed "sunscreen" martinis.
The DJ seemed to be playing a decent mix of music, however, I couldn't hear it often so this definitely isn't a venue for dancing. In spite of missing dancing, I really enjoyed Orchid Lounge and hope to go back for drinks again sometime soon.
Location: 500 E 11th St at Avenue A
Hours: Mon-Tue: 7:00p-3:00a, Wed-Fri: 5:00p-4:00a, Sat 7:00p-4:00a, Sun 8:00p-4:00a
Cost: $ ($8-10 for a martini)
OMG IT CLOSED BEFORE I COULD GO AGAIN. Boo.