(Photo: Melissa Hom)

(Photo: Melissa Hom)

I’m going to say I called this: some years ago, after rewatching Looking For Mr. Goodbar, I wondered why the hell New York’s retro-obsessed restaurateurs hadn’t yet repackaged the fern bar. It seemed like recycling its tiffany lamps and Harvey Wallbangers of the late ’70s and early ’80s would play well with the kitsch cravers who, for instance, flocka to Rocka Rolla to feel like they’re at a working-class midwestern bar. Apparently I wasn’t the only one pondering this: in 2010, the Washington Post wondered if we were due for a fern bar revival, and now Joe Carroll (Spuyten DyvilSt. AnselmFette Sau) and Francesco Panella (Antica Pesa) are bringing it on in a big way.

(Photo: Melissa Hom)

(Photo: Melissa Hom)

Our colleagues over at Grub Street send word that Oleanders is due to replace the too-fancy-for-its-own-good Elm in the McCarren Hotel this Friday. With its fern-festooned dining room, this new endeavor is inspired by the concept that places like Ruby Tuesday’s and TGI Friday’s eventually commercialized, but we’re assured that chef Kevin Chojnowski’s coq au vin is tastefully thickened with pig’s blood instead of salt-sugar-fat mystery goop. And with the great Dale DeGroff in charge of the bar program, you can expect the best possible versions of passé “girlie drinks” like the Bay Breeze, Mud Slide, and the Sex on the Beach.
To match the blender drinks, Grub Street reports there’ll be poolside dining and a new 80s-inspired rooftop concept featuring a chrome-plated light from Studio 54. Not going to lie, this sounds kind of awesome. Just make to sure to get to it before it’s inevitably annexed by the bros of Berry Hill.
Head over to Grub Street for the menu.
Correction, June 23: The original version of this post was revised to correct the spelling of the restaurant’s name.