Sun-Thu, 3pm-3am; Fri-Sat, 3pm-4am
F at Second Ave.; 6 at Bleecker St.; N, R at Prince St.
American Express, MasterCard, Visa
This tidy room in Allen Street's dingy mini-mall plays to two downtown tastes. Rockwood's amber lighting and wooden tables lure Lower East Siders who take their décor cues from shelter magazines. Its careful wine selection deepens the sophisticated vibe. But the schmancy trappings fade into the gold-and-red-painted walls when the scruffy musicians tune up at the cramped stage a few feet away. From around 6pm until 3am, owner Ken Rockwood, a veteran indie musician, hosts a nightly rotation of strummers, chanteuses and rockin' combos, and the acoustics and cozy quarters make you hush and listen to the tunes. A good chunk of patrons are friends of the performers, and the cheering can be infectious, but if the act fails to appeal, happily no seat is too far from the door.
Picnics with a view, roller-skating nostalgia, and a party for gay headbangers.