Before The Village People came along and spoiled things in the late 1970s, the Navy was cool. Everyone appreciated the Allied sailor’s heroic efforts in World War Two, and forgave the occasional fist fight that broke out during shore leave as just a bit of high spirits. Frank Sinatra and Gene Kelly epitomised the loveable Navy rogue with a jaunty hat and a twinkle in the eye in New York-based musical On the Town, Alfred Eisenstaedt’s iconic V-J Day image set the trend for forces descending upon Times Square – and now, a bar and restaurant in the city’s SoHo neighbourhood is looking to recreate a bit of the old school maritime cool by harking back to wartime. Not exactly the good old days, but they sure had style.
Restaurateurs Matt Abramcyk and Akiva Elstein designed Navy with the help of Jeanette Dalrot, using motifs and materials from throughout the conflict’s theatre of war; Japanese curtains, French linen and vintage military canvas have all been redeployed. Servers are suitably attired in period-inspired jackets and frocks by Lady and Butler. The décor is retro but the food from chef Camille Becerra concentrates on the fresh – see for example the raw bar with oysters, clams and sea urchin on offer. The menu changes daily, but expect plenty of fare from river and ocean, inventively prepared.