convenient theater district location
wide variety of infused vodka flavors
great Happy Hour prices
not as packed as the Russian Vodka Room
nice fruit and cheese platter
slightly pricier than the Russian Vodka Room
potato pancakes were slightly bland
food is a bit pricey
drinks are very strong, a warning to newbies!
The Russian Samovar is a charming venue with a unique old-school character. I've visited the Russian Samovar a few times for Happy Hours, dinner, and late Saturday evennings, and I've always come out happy.
The Russian Samovar is conveniently located at 256 W. 52nd St. between 8th Ave. and Broadway. It's steps away from the C and E trains at 50th st./8th Ave., the 1 train at 50th St. and Broadway, and the B,D, and E trains at 7th Ave./53rd St.
The Russian Samovar is not to be confused with the Russian Vodka Room across the street. Both are fun charming places with their own unique perks.
The first time I visited the Russian Samovar was for a Happy Hour. They have $5 specials for infused vodkas, and I was impresed with the variety of flavors that they have. They have a variety of fruity flavors including peach, pomagranate, and cherry, others such as mint, vanilla, and ginger, and some adventurous flavors such as garlic and horseradish.
I loved the peach and the pomagranate flavors. I also liked the vanilla. My friend was more adventurous and tried the horseradish, but it was not for me. Still, I like the fact that their drink menu suits all palates.
Because it was close to dinner time, I also ordered a fruit and cheese plate and a potato pancake. The fruit and cheese plate was quite generous and delicious. The fruits were ripe and fresh, and there was assortment of brie and bleu cheese.
The potato pancakes were a bit bland, but tasted better with sprinkled the salt. The potato pancake was piping hot and generously portioned. It also came with sour cream.
The bartenders and waiters are extremely helpful and friendly.
Happy Hours are nowhere near as crowded as they are at the Russian Vodka Room, but this just makes it more relaxing. One night, the Russian Vodka Room was so crowded that the staff began throwing people out for staying too long.
Happy Hour prices are a bit higher at the Samovar than at RVR, but at Samovar, you will definitely get and seat and you will be comfortable.
The atmosphere at the Russian Samovar is also a bit more posh. The coat checker, the hanging red lanterns, and live piano music give it a slightly classier ambience. This place definitely has an old-school atmoshphere, reminds you of images of 70s/80s Soviet style.
Dinnertimes are lively but also relaxing with the live piano music. On Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights, the place picks up. The clientele is fun. The place gets a lot of young professionals as well as Eastern Europeans.
The Russian Samovar is a charming venue, great for dinner, a light night out with friends, or a Happy Hour. You will love the many exotic flavors of vodka as well as the friendly efficient service. You will love the infused vodkas, the generous portions of food, and friendly efficient service. The piano music and old Soviet atmosphere also makes the Russian Samovar a unique and fun place to visit.