3Forty Grill: Hidden Away on the Waterfront
I didn't even know this place existed, but truth be told, it's pretty nice if you are looking to settle in with a cocktail.
So this week, on my quest for the perfect drink, I passed by Havana Lounge, which took over the Cage’s old spot on Newark Street. I’m happy to report that the interior looks done, and it will be beautiful. I won’t make any judgments until I can experience the bar for myself, but I am kind of excited. Can they get someone to fan me with palm fronds as I hypothetically sip my rum punch? Just an idea.
Anyway, this week’s journey took me to 3Forty Grill, a restaurant and lounge that I had no idea even existed (it’s been around since 2003). It’s tucked away on Sinatra Drive, at Third Street, and its name and logo will make you think it serves dry burgers and warm beer – but don’t be so fooled! Inside 3Forty’s doors is actually a very nice-looking upscale restaurant, and a lounge with plush couches and candles. Also, it is apparently owned by the same guy who built Oddfellow’s Rest, a bar that at first I wasn’t so keen on, but who soon won me over. So anyway, I was interested to see what 3Forty would offer, besides a beautiful view of the Hudson.
My friend and I walked in during Happy Hour (Monday through Friday, 4-7 p.m.), and took a seat at the bar. It was… empty. A few people were eating and drinking at tables outside, but I wanted to experience the actual bar. The deal for Happy Hour was $3 off margaritas, martinis and mojitos, $4 domestic beer and $5 imported beer. So I ordered a pomegranate mojito, which not only sounded delicious but was actually delicious ($10 normally, $7 at Happy Hour).
With ambient music and dim lighting, 3Forty was definitely a nice place to hang out with a good drink. A gauzy curtain separated the dining room from the bar and lounge area, and a bluish light gives the place a vaguely futuristic feel.
“This is, like, the spa of bars,” said my friend. “You just need someone rubbing your shoulders, and you’re set.”
Anyway, cocktails are about $10-12, and include the 3 Forty-tini (raspberry vodka, Malibu, triple sec, watermelon pucker, banana liqueur and pineapple puree), the Dirty Sexy Money (Ketel One vodka, olive juice, Tabasco and “tomolives”) and the Key Lime Pie (Pinnacle whipped vodka, lime juice, cream, pineapple puree and a graham cracker crust rim). So, if anything… they are inventive with their drinks.
As for beer, it’s bottles only, which will run you about $5-7. Nothing interesting in the selection, I’d probably get a Brooklyn East India Pale Ale or a Sam Adams Oktoberfest if I was in a beer mood. Wines are about $9-14 per glass, with the most expensive wine at $198 (oh wait, that’s not counting the Cristal at $320, which I’ll be sure to order, uh, next time).
Because 3Forty turns into a thumping club on the weekends, they have a special bottle service menu, with Grey Goose at $250, Bacardi at $200 and Courvoisier at $275. So like, yeah, if you want to throw yourself a killer birthday party and dance on a couch and get too drunk and fall off and break your heels – there’s that for you!
Without going to 3Forty on a weekend night, I probably didn’t get the full experience, but I’ve had my share of bottle service at thumping Manhattan spots, and I can attest that clubs are clubs, and there’s not too much of a difference between them. What I’ve always been interested in with this column is finding great places to hang out after work, with your friends, on a nice date, whatever. And while 3Forty is pretty quiet during the workweek, it’s actually a nice quiet. Between the ambient music, an inventive cocktail, and a killer view of the New York skyline, I rather enjoyed my time at the bar, even if there were no weird conversations to overhear, or new friends to be made.
I’ll give 3Forty seven out of ten frosty mugs (graham cracker crust-lined martini glasses?), because I like the downtempo atmosphere and the well-thought out drink menu. Obviously the weekends are not for most, but if you’re looking for a beer and a shot and a place to watch the game, there is no lack of that in Hoboken. If you’re looking to turn the televisions off and instead gaze out onto the river at sunset, then yes, do yourself a favor and head to 3Forty.