Loki Lounge, the bar that's been on the corner of Fifth Avenue and Second Street since 1999, closed up shop a couple months ago, about eight months after the owners put the space on the market. They didn't close for good, however; while about two-thirds of the space (facing Fifth Avenue) is still for rent, the remaining space, accessible via a staircase around the corner on Second Street, has reopened with a brand new concept.
The cozy new space, above, is certainly an improvement from the rather dour previous one, and the owners probably should have given it a new name to separate it from its past. There's plenty of exposed brick, a working fireplace, and light woods, with a bar that seats eight and a handful of tables. There's a solid selection of craft cocktails made with fresh-made juices, as well as a food menu of small bites and sandwiches that looks pretty good: dishes include soy-glazed chicken wings, bay scallop tacos, BBQ pork sliders, lamb flatbread with olives and gryuere, a burger, a shaved Italian beef sandwich, fried baby chicken, and cheese and charcuterie, topping out at $13.
The new bar is a little difficult to find, hiding behind a small door with no sign, but it's hard to argue that it's not an imprevement from its previous incarnation.