Last Friday I went to Henrietta Hudson's for the first time, which is easily the most well-known lesbian bar in New York City. Located in the West Village, Henrietta's boasts a fairly diverse clientele of women ranging in age from 20-something to 40-something that run the gamut from very fem girls and businesswomen to androgenous types (who are always the hottest bitches in the room) and those who'd fall into the butch category. It was a friendly, warm atmosphere with some very attractive bartenders, a dimly lit lounge perfect for make-out sessions (of which there were plenty to witness), a tiny cramped bar, and a modestly sized dance-floor that was bumpin' come 10:30 pm. It was very convivial with lots of group dancing, a few gay men to bring the fab, and a DJ who wasn't scared to try some interesting mash-ups, including Billy Jean/Sexyback.
Some other venues I've gone to that I would recommend for anyone interested in plunging into gay NYC nightlife are:
Suite ~ located on the upper west side in Morningside Heights, this small, local gay bar/club is an incredibly good time. I used to regularly go when I was in school since it was so close to my apartment. The lack of cover and its proximity to Columbia University make it a popular place with the college crowd and 20-somethings. Expect drag karaoke, costume contests, live singing, cheap drinks and a lively dance floor. The decour of the place is also awesome for a hole in the wall. I have fond memories of being festooned with New Year's regalia when I went this past year, as well as jumping on stage and explaining what "two girls, one cup" was to an interested drag queen. It's a place where anything goes.
Splash ~ is everything you'd expect from a chic NYC gay club: hot men, expensive drinks, and a lot of trolling - that is, if you're a gay man. If not, it sure is a great show. Located just northwest of Union Square in Chelsea, you can be sure they'll be plenty of eye candy to goggle at, not to mention the model good-looking bartenders and barely clad go-go dancers that strut their stuff and shake their junk on raised platforms scattered around the dance floor. It's a big place with two dance floors and two massively huge bars. Check your coats and jump in. The discoball awaits you.
Caddyshack ~ has the illest DJs I've ever had the pleasure of dancing to. You want to dance, you haul your ass out to Brooklyn's #1 lesbian bar. Of all the venues described, this is definately the only dive. It's cruddy, it's sleezy, but it's big and draws large crowds of both gay women and straight couples. I saw more than a few guys with their gals dancing. When asked why they were there, one guy told me it was because it had the best dancefloor. I totally agree with him. Caddyshack also boasts upstairs and downstairs bars, a lounge and a roofdeck for those not interesting in busting a move. Oh. And they have pole dancers. Chick pole dancers. Be still my heart.
Posh ~ is a very laidback, gay lounge in Hell's Kitchen. It's perfect for the happy-hour, just-got-out-of-work crowd, which is how I was introduced to the place. The drinks are cheap and strong, the guys generally business-types and the black leather couches are certainly wonderful places to sink your ass into after 8 hours at work.
My friend and I last Friday at Henrietta's. Jess was bemoaning the fact that she will not be getting any ass for the next two years because she's off to Turkmenistan to serve in Peace Corps. Hence, my grand idea to hit Henrietta's. We had a great time and you can see that I am sweating my ass off. I do not glean. I sweat. Yes, women do that. And before you ask, that is a cage behind us. They were supposed to have dancers, but we left before midnight and didn't get to see them :( I like dancing in cages. But, that's a different story...
My college roomie A (some of you may know her as the roommate I watched Seasons 1-6 of Buffy with) and my fabulous Gaysian love up on the stage in Suite during New Year's. Like I said, anything goes, including PDA. The lipstick smudge on Gaysian's right cheek is very much mine.
Me at Splash this past January. Look. at. that. ass. Look at it! And he's so... shiny. That man was working hard for his money (which you can see tucked into his shorts there - $3 came courtesy of moi) so I actually bought him a bottle of water and he gave me a peck on the cheek!