Obivia

When planning a date, it's easy to find a spot that'll leave a lady craving the D, but hard to find one that also gives you the flexibility to bail once you discover she's a joyless ho. Since there are no guarantees when it comes to the gruesome New York mating game, hit newly opened Obivia.

Obivia helps you "lay the pipe" by infusing the seductive atmosphere of a Moroccan lounge with the upscale swankiness of a not-Moroccan lounge. It's got dim lighting and plush seating, but unlike other North African-themed hangs, isn't so choked with hookah smoke that you find yourself accidentally licking the bearded cheek of a grizzled bazaar merchant from Tangiers.

Aside from Obivia's obvious benefits, the true beauty of this operation is that you're not tied down should the evening become another miserable fiasco. For instance:

  • There are doors at either end of the bar. You can stroll in the Lafayette entrance, casually appraise your date's appearance, then continue right out onto Cleveland Place if she doesn't meet your rigorous standards.
  • A reservation gets you a table but doesn't lock you into ordering food. You can feel out your date's opinions, neuroses and butt over cocktails before deciding if she's worth the additional $30.
  • The small plates menu is extremely scalable*. If you do eat, you can call it quits as soon as she reveals a quality that displeases you -- like disinterest in the plight of the homeless, and/or disinterest in you.

Basically, the less certain you are about her, the more certain you should be about Obivia. The alternative is to gamble on good chemistry with a romantic sit-down restaurant -- only to have your cockeyed optimism crushed when she mentions that she was the founder of her college's Chastity Club, then orders the surf and turf.

*we suggest the dates wrapped in bacon, and the duck nachos