Ara Wine Bar[CLOSED]

Calling this place “sleepy” is an insult not only to the so-named dwarf, but to the institution of sleep itself. This joint is one step away from mummification. It makes Robert Wiene’s somnambulist look like a wild man partying in Dr. Caligari’s cabinet–know what I mean? It’s not that you want your wine bar to be a panties-hanging-from-the-ceiling-fan frat party or anything, but when the cold hand of death is pouring your Pinot, you know it’s time to hit ’em with the paddles. It’s not really as bad as all that, but is in stark contrast to the other restaurants and bars within two square blocks that are packed to the gills with mussel-eating Francophiles and trendoids of all shapes and sizes (but predominantly cylindrical and between a zero and three). Ara is actually a nice little space–at once comfortable and nicely put together. The bartender couldn∆t help but be friendly, as it would have been really awkward if she was snobby to her only customers. We sat and quietly sipped our wine in relaxed coziness and chilled in the small space. Mellow to the point of sedation, this would actually be a great place to bring a date at the end of the night for the old “yawn” move. She’d be Sominex in your hands. [MF]