Sofar City Secrets: Chinatown Guide

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You can always count on Sofar Sounds to bring the magic back to any live music experience, but we decided to take it a step further by helping you plan the rest of your epic Sofar evening as well! We asked Sofar NYC Ambassadors to share their favorite spots for food, drinks and of course, dancing, so you can plan your whole evening in Chinatown.

We know that you come to Sofar for so much more than just the music…so don’t be afraid to invite a new friend out to join you after the show!

Before the Magic

Vanessa’s Dumplings 

Sofar Says: “This is the definition of a no-muss, no-fuss Chinese fast-food restaurant. The staff at VD work at lightning speed. Super cheap, super fast, super tasty.” - Naina Ramrakhani, Show Lead

For quick pre-show fuel, look no further than this spot serving up buns, soups, pancake sandwiches and - duh - dumplings. We know nothing gets you in the mood to groove like dumplings.

118 A Eldridge Street; Photo by Johnn

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Monroe 

Sofar Says: “With incredibly affordable and delicious wine carafes, Monroe is the best place to start off your evening. Plus, you get to eat and drink while being basically completely surrounded by amazing plants… which is a huge perk considering we live in a concrete jungle.” - Sophie Everhard, NYC Assistant Director

Whether or not you eat your greens, you can at least eat surrounded by them at this airy, plant-filled oasis serving Mediterranean bites near the Manhattan Bridge. Enjoy a sampling of the Southern European small plates solo or round up a crew of Sofar friends to go all-in on a meat and cheese platter and some seriously shareable entrees. Whatever you order, we’re sure it pairs well with all that extra oxygen.

49 Monroe Street

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Taiwan Pork Chop House 

Sofar Says: “I love the authenticity of Taiwan Pork Chop House on Doyers! Get the Salt & Pepper Chicken over Rice. It’s enough to share with a friend and only $5.75. Then order a Bubble Tea with Milk to go!” - Stephanie Mitchell, Assistant Director

Quality, quantity, authenticity and serious affordability – this tiny Taiwanese joint checks all the boxes. The menu is straightforward: various combinations of seafood, meat and vegetables, all served on a bed of rice for prices as low as $4.50.  Combine dinner here with the BYOB element of most Sofar shows, and you’re looking at a very fun, very budget-friendly evening.

3 Doyers Street

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After the Magic

Mr. Fongs

Sofar Says: “Mr. Fongs is the type of bar you want to introduce your friends to. For those who haven’t been there before, you’ll feel very New York walking into this vibey bar tucked in the corner of Chinatown. Once you’re in, you get great people, a solid playlist, and if you’re lucky, a free shot may slide down the bar from someone you’ve never met. Any night is a good night. At least that was my experience!” - Allie Shulman, Global Volunteers and People

The New York Times dubbed Mr. Fong’s Chinatown’s unlikely ‘It’ bar back in 2015, and while it’s been two years – effectively a lifetime in NYC time – based on the crowds and vibes, we’d say the “It” status definitely still rings true. In terms of consumables, think Asian-inspired cocktails and small, pleasingly affordable eats that are perfect for satisfying post-music munchies.

40 Market Street

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169 Bar 

Sofar Says: “Right next to the train and super lively. It’s a great place to have drinks with your friends, and the best part - when you get hungry, there are also tons of great food options steps away.” - Justine Diaz, Artist Liaison

Formerly known as “Bloody Bucket” (don’t ask… we certainly didn’t), 169 Bar, a Sofar fave, has been slingin’ drinks for over a century and serves as the perfect post-show spot to discuss your newfound music favorites – and, via DJ Chucky Love, maybe even discover some new ones.

169 E Broadway

NOTABLE MENTIONS

Oliver’s for coffee

Dim Sum Go Go for dim sum

Jajaja’s for vegan Mexican on your way home

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