Set in Alphabet City, with a similar casual vibe to its Mother’s Ruin sister, Loverboy is open: a low-key cocktail and pizza bar. Owners TJ Lynch and Richard Knapp have hit that neighborhood sweet spot between cocktail and dive bar with their first bar in Nolita and with Loverboy are trying to replicate that vibe over on Avenue C.
“We like what we do and we also like pizza, so we were like, ‘Why don’t we just do both?’” Lynch tells Eater. “Plus when people go out and have a bunch of drinks they end up eating pizza anyway, so we’re just saving them the trip. It’s one-stop shopping.”
Except that pizza isn’t available just yet: The guys are locked in a battle royale with Con Ed, which Lynch calls a “shakedown.” He says the gas company wanted $5,000 each time they did work on the space. “So we’re gonna go electric, and they can suck it.”
While they convert the kitchen, consulting chef Nick Pfannerstill (Dovetail) is using electric burners to make easy dishes — the full menu is below — like a chicken parmesan sandwich, sausage arancini, prosciutto toast, and fried calamari with togarashi and nori mayo. When the pizza is eventually available, Lynch likens it to Roman-style, with a rectangular shape and medium thickness. Slices will range from $4 to $7, but Lynch calls them “substantial.” They’re in the process of swapping to electric now, so pizza should roll out in “a few weeks.”
Cocktails ($12) have cheeky names like Shameville (gin, lime, curaçao, angostura) and Soren Beerkegaard (whiskey, Aperol, lemon, cinnamon, Kolsch), but will change frequently. And similarly to Mother’s Ruin, there will always be a frozen variation in rotation, starting with the summery Douche Bigalow, blending tequila, watermelon, Pimms, citrus, and pineapple.
The 50-seat spot is open daily from 5 p.m. to 2 a.m., with the kitchen closing at 1:30 p.m. Weekend brunch will start in about a month, and this fall will bring sidewalk seating against the large windows that swing open.