Recently P.J. Clarke’s, that very Mad Men-like eatery, shut the doors to its second floor—but just to the common folk. The special people, or rather its loyal customers, received a membership card that grants access to the rarefied sanctum of floor two, known as the Sidecar. The upstairs space is more elegant and thus quiet, so it’s a good nook to impress a date (is the membership card the Upper East Side version of The Standard’s coveted Boom Boom Room card?) or to slip away from the hustle of the always-busy dining rooms downstairs (now unofficially dubbed by us P.J.’s Siberia). P.J. Clarke’s plans to issue 100 more cards, Willy Wonka golden-ticket-style, and will cap membership in New York and D.C. at 1,884, which is kind of a weird number, but whatever. Phil Scotti, the director of member affairs, says it is still looking for lifetime members who will come year after year. Rumor has it that celebrities Brooke Shields, Liza Minnelli, Johnny Depp and Keith Richards are members already. The time is now to eat every lunch and dinner at P.J. Clarke’s for the next month.
P.J. Clarke’s, 915 Third Avenue, (212) 317-1616.