К сожалению, я пока не говорю по-русски.
(Unfortunately, I can not yet speak Russian.)
But I am really really really anxious to learn.
Passed an unexpectedly fun evening at the Russian Vodka Room which was listed by New York Magazine (aka :: my Bible) as one of the best Russian Drinking Spots. This reference to RVR, like all the rest, will caution potential visitors from going into Russian Samovar across the street. Not once but twice I read warnings against this kind of mistake, cautioning that upon your entrance, the patrons of Samovar will coldly ask you whether you in fact mean to be across the street. My friend Jessi arrived early and made this mistake – hilarity ensued. (“I thought ‘Samovar’ meant ‘Vodka’ in Russian!” she wailed.)
The main thing to know about RVR is that they have vodka; lots of it and most of it homemade/flavoured. A look around the bar room showed glass cisterns, filled with vodka + cranberries, vodka + peach & apricot, vodka + dill & black pepper — very traditional, I would assume. If nothing else, way aesthetically pleasing. The price was also right – $21 will get you a carafe with about 5shots, $58 will get you about 15. And the majority of our party agreed that the vodka was tasty — almost TOO tasty to be ‘just vodka.’
So please, don’t be dissuaded by the large piano, almost invisible waitstaff or the prospect of downing shots of vodka for hours. You shouldn’t get a New York stamp on your passport until you go somewhere that culturally unnerves you; if you’re missing that stamp, this is your place.