Party Earth Review Celebrating the sultry pin-ups of the past with understated – and perhaps even dive-like – elegance, Nurse Bettie is a vintage burlesque bar that caters to modern day vamps and their fellas. Reverently displayed photos... ... read full review
106 Norfolk Street
New York, NY 10002
F, J, M, Z: Essex Street / Delancey Street
Lower East Side, New York –
Celebrating the sultry pin-ups of the past with understated – and perhaps even dive-like – elegance, Nurse Bettie is a vintage burlesque bar that caters to modern day vamps and their fellas.
Reverently displayed photos and paintings of sexy 50s icons – including, of course, the venue’s namesake, Bettie Page – hang from the brick walls inside the shoebox space, which manages to fit in a couple booths and an ornate loveseat among the low barstools that line the short bar.
Wednesdays and Thursdays host live burlesque performances from around 10pm, when dancers treat patrons to free, seductive, and interactive performances, and a few of the rowdier guests inevitably end up getting spanked.
The rest of the week, though, Bettie’s is a chill local’s joint, attracting laid-back groups of friends who drop in for the daily Happy Hour (runs all night on Mondays and Sundays) and stay longer to chat over Pimm’s Cups and ginger martinis.
Even on weekends, a comfortable crowd waxes and wanes throughout the evening, with intimate couples momentarily displaced by a few louder barhoppers who are usually gone by the time late-night revelers drop back for one last mellow drink.
Turning up the heat but still playing it cool, Nurse Bettie prescribes lots of conversation and a little dose of boobies to anyone suffering from a lack of nighttime fun.
Mostly local crowd of free-spirited hipsters, laid-back club scene vets, couples on dates, curious groups of friends, fans of burlesque, and late-night revelers looking for a chill spot to cap the night, early-20s to mid-30s.
Free burlesque shows on Wednesdays and Thursdays from 9:45pm. DJ spins rock, alternative, dance, and some Top 40 M, F–Su from 10:30pm. Conversation-friendly ambient music all other times.
No food. Happy Hour all night M/Su, from 6–10pm Tu/Th, and from 6–9pm F/Sa.
Beer $5–$6, wine $8/glass or $32/bottle, cocktails $7–$12.
Casual: jeans, graphic t-shirts, sweaters, skirts, comfortable blouses, and tassels to get on stage.
Fridays and Saturdays for a busy but still intimate date spot or Wednesday and Thursday nights for the free burlesque.
The Back Room (102 Norfolk Street) is a hidden speakeasy with a similarly seductive vibe and old-school glamour theme, but sits a few notches higher on the chicness meter.