Food & Drink

Zipper Factory

Whether you're getting off work, exiting MSG, or just looking to buy a severed thumb, there are plenty of reasons why you'd find yourself near West 37th Street. Tomorrow, the wasteland that is Mid-8th Avenue Village finally gets a post/pre-whatever spot worth hitting up: The Zipper Factory Tavern. The ZFT's a two-story, Vaudeville-ish pub attached to the Zipper Theater, an off-Broadway venue with audience seating pulled from old cars, buses, and shorter buses. Walk past the front bar, and you're in an expansive dining hangar that serves up chow inspired by the 'hood's pre-junkie, E. European population: Reuben sandwiches, veal schnitzel, and smoked/cured meats homemade by the chef (a kielbasa-heavy hobby that's made him the darling of Upstairs there's another bar, and a wraparound drinking mezzanine with boozing booths in which to happily miss train after train back to Long Island. The ZFT's even got an outdoor smoking alley, where you're free to bring your beverage -- this part of town promotes classic activities like mugging and pimping, so why not cigarettes?If you're actually there to see a play, the owners encourage bringing your drinks into the theater -- partly because drinking enhances art appreciation, and partly because the 1am realization that you're still in the West 30s can't be dealt with sober.