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Eaters' Journal: Blue Ribbon Bar

This is Eaters' Journal, in which we muse on recent meals. We collectively eat out upwards of 20 times a week in these parts, so we might as well discuss.

[Blue Ribbon Plywoood, 2/10/07, by Femia; full view in Eater Pool]

Blue Ribbon Downing Street: Bruce and Eric Bromberg's newest project, Blue Ribbon Downing Street, soft opened last night to a small crowd of friends and family. The eatery is located at 34 Downing St, just a few steps from Blue Ribbon Bakery and next door to Ditch Plains.

Eater stopped by for drinks and some (gratis) small plates. First impressions:
The place is tiny—it looks to be around 20 seats. Taking into account the current hotness for counter seating and West Village dining, we're guessing that the spot will be nigh impossible to get into. The interior is sleek and wood paneled; seating is confined to a marble bar and a marble counter. Though the drink list wasn't finalized as of last night, we can testify that cocktails are first rate. The menu includes a wide variety of wine, available by groups (sparkling, chenin blanc, pinot noir and nebbiolo), tastes, glasses, half-bottles and bottles. The wine list dwarfs the eclectic food selection: snacks, hot and cold small plates, caviar, salads, toasts (crostini), cheeses, Mexican honey and desserts. Brothers Bromberg were circulating and passing out food. The place is barely illuminated by exposed-filament bulbs hanging over the bar—said one server "we'll have to change the paper that we print the menus on, since no one can read them in this light." Overheard was a chef chatting about the next Blue Ribbon (Blue Ribbon Sushi Bar & Grill), slated for 'in a few months.'