Sun-Tue, 3:30pm-2am; Wed-Thu, 3:30pm-3am; Fri-Sat, 3:30pm-4am
3:30pm-7pm; half-price select house cocktails, half-price wine by the glass, all other drinks reduced
1, 2, 3 at 96th St.
American Express, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
Named for the Egyptian obelisk in nearby Central Park, this relaxed, intimate cabaret caters equally to jazz aficionados looking to catch a set as it does to diners seeking a place to chat. With little decoration beyond an exposed brick column, mirrored panels on the cream-colored walls and strings of white icicle lights, Cleo's lets the music set the mood. Jazz standards are popular during the first half of the week, as venerable local players including Keith Ingham and Les Kurtz lead open-mic nights and early-evening jam sessions; later in the week, combos of all stripes ride a musical roller coaster of melancholic lows and head-bobbing highs. Each night finishes with a jam stretching into the wee hours, and all are welcome to join. But a note of caution: This isn't karaoke or your shower. Even the college students and middle-aged amateurs stepping in can swing with assurance. At the end of the narrow bar, a projection TV (muted, of course) serves up the night's big sporting event.Open Mic
Sun, 4pm–8pm; Wed, 7pm–11pm
Picnics with a view, roller-skating nostalgia, and a party for gay headbangers.