Antique Garage

Restaurants, Mediterranean Soho
  • 4 out of 5 stars
(1user review)
2 Love It
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Plush carpeting controls the acoustics at this auto-repair shop turned restaurant. The garrulous crowd gathers under faded paintings and timeworn mirrors to feast on generous portions of burekas (feta-stuffed phyllo), thyme-laced haloumi cheese wrapped in grape leaves, and tuna steaks swimming in red-pepper puree. Regulars are as devoted to the live music as they are to the Mediterranean menu: Jazz performers wail Tuesdays between 7:30 and 10:30pm and on weekends from 1 to 5pm.


Venue name: Antique Garage
Address: 41 Mercer St
New York
Cross street: between Broome and Grand Sts
Opening hours: Daily noon–4pm, 5pm–midnight
Transport: Subway: J, Z, N, Q, R, 6 to Canal St
Price: Average small plate: $10. AmEx, MC, V
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Average User Rating

4 / 5

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The name makes it sound like some uber-pretentious "new restaurant from the people behind XYZ place in the West Village/Lower East Side". And the fact that it's smack dab in the heart of Soho doesn't help. But Antique Garage is a surprising casual, no-frills restaurant that you can get a pretty decent meal without spending an arm and a leg.

The decor cannot be defined. It's a hodgepodge of random colonial/renaissance-era paintings, mismatched mirrors with frames like the one on Monica and Chandler's door, and other random fixings you'd find at a thrift shop in Williamsburg. And the live band just kinda adds to the slightly confused vibe.

But that's sort of the fun part. This place has been around for a while, and a big reason is that it doesn't take itself too seriously. The cuisine is another curveball- Mediterranean (I would have guessed Italian or French long before that). I assume you know what to do here- start with a bunch of stuff to dip your bread into, and end with something that has lamb in it.