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Drink of the Week

Lenin Martini

Prepare for an out-of-this-universe experience at Sputnik, a Broadway lounge named for the world's first artificial satellite, which was launched by Russia in 1957. To fuel your flight, down several sweet Lenin Martinis ($7), made with vodka, Grand Marnier, fresh lemon juice, a splash of grenadine and Tang -- the orange drink preferred by astronauts. "I wanted something that complemented the eclectic boutiques in the neighborhood, and what's more kitschy than the Cold War-era Soviet Union?" asks Matt LaBarge, who opened Sputnik late last year with his wife, Allison. The dimly lit Sputnik, decorated with space photos, circular turquoise vinyl booths and a stellar concrete-and-steel bar, draws a more relaxed, cocktail- and wine-drinking crowd than the hi-dive, its boisterous next-door neighbor and sibling -- where cheap beer flows like water and the nightly recreation includes local indie-rock sets, cool DJs and classic rock-and-roll movies. "I consider Sputnik to be our satellite bar, a place where you can hang out and actually talk," says LaBarge. Modeled after several of New York's East Village hot spots and occupying the space that was formerly home to the Ellsworth Tavern, Seven South and, most recently, the jam band/hippie hangout Quixote's True Blue, Sputnik and the hi-dive are ready for blastoff -- and for you to get blasted.

 
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