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“Boîte de Jazz Comme Il Faut”

The Village Vanguard
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Greenwich Village Walking Tour with Food Tasting
Ranked #19 of 862 Nightlife in New York City
Certificate of Excellence
Level Contributor
65 reviews
25 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 43 helpful votes
“Boîte de Jazz Comme Il Faut”
Reviewed 14 October 2013

It should be obvious that the Village Vanguard is, simply said, one of the world's leading jazz venues —but, alas, you never know what kinds of expectations some folks bring to the scene. Those folks would be the reviewers who give the place anything less than an excellent review.

I visited solo for the first set of a Steve Wilson Quartet performance on a Thursday night in early August, arriving a little over a half hour before the music began to assure myself a good seat —and, on the advice of the staff, I think I got the best seat in the house, acoustically speaking and otherwise, on a stool at the end of the bar, at a level just slightly above that of the mass of tables, thus with clear sight lines to the stage.

I couldn't have had a better time.

Thus my advice in this review is arrive early, maybe 45 minutes early on a weekend —and either have already dined or prepare for a later dinner, for the Vanguard doesn't serve food. It's strictly a place to listen to the music and have a drink, as a jazz club ought to be.

Visited August 2013
Thank RouteBG
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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322 reviews from our community

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Milwaukee, WI
Level Contributor
64 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
“Feel the History”
Reviewed 7 October 2013

What a cool place. This is the proper way to experience jazz. Dress for a warm room because it is cramped and hot with that many people shoved into a basement. If you are the slightest bit claustrophobic, this place is not for you. Acoustics were great. Workers were not intimidating in the least. Highly recommended. Especially for the reasonable price.

Visited October 2013
Thank jcwolff
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
41 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
“Love the Music, not the Venue”
Reviewed 30 September 2013

On our recent trip to NYC, we decided it was a must to visit one of the famous jazz clubs. We chose the Village Vanguard because of the musician playing that evening, Bill Charlap. He was amazing and we really enjoyed the music. The venue itself was disappointing. We don't mind the stairs or the cramped quarters but would it be so difficult to serve a decent glass of wine? We were at the early show and it was announced we could stay for the late show at no charge since it was not sold out but chose to leave because the wine served was almost undrinkable. We thought we would be visiting a classy establishment and were disappointed that the ownership could not even bother to choose a decent wine to serve by the glass to their patrons. So giving this a 3 rating for the music but 1 for ambience.

Visited September 2013
1 Thank JazzLovers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chandler, Arizona
Level Contributor
278 reviews
54 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 114 helpful votes
“Great Jazz”
Reviewed 27 September 2013

My wife is a big jazz lover and on our trip to NYC I promised to take her to a jazz club. I picked the Village Vanguard since I remembered it from my college and law school days.

First, unlike most jazz clubs this is one where you are only feet away from the musicians. The group performing was Tootie's Tempo: a three piece combo with drums (Tootie), a bass player, and a piano player. Tootie has been playing for years and the group was great.

Second, the price of admission is very reasonable: $25 a person with a one drink minimum. Can't get much better than that!

Third, this one place where you are not hassled to buy extra drinks.

Fourth, the place is small and so are the tables but how much room do you need for one drink each?

In brief, a delightful evening with great atmosphere and service. And afterwards we had a chance to converse with the trio. We had a ball and I can recommend this place to everyone.

Visited August 2013
Thank ackvil
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Albany, NY
Level Contributor
65 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
“Not for the claustrophobic.”
Reviewed 22 July 2013

While I loved sitting six feet from the Bad Plus drummer, I just couldn't get comfortable in this very cramped club. The tiny tables are piled as close together as possible, and the ladies' bathroom stall was the smallest I've seen in my entire life. But all of this is besides the point, because folks come here for the music experience. I loved the intimate experience of being so close to the band but didn't love the intimate experience of being so close to my neighbors. It's only fair to say that my teenage son thought going here was one of the coolest experiences he's ever had. Oh, to be young again!

We arrived at 7:10 for an 8:30 sold out show. There were about five people ahead of us on line. When the doors opened around 7:30, we were directed to sit at a specific table, which eliminated the problem of deciding which would be the best seats for our party of three.

Visited July 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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