by Maddy Schmidt and Catherine Weingarten
Those looking for love in New York City will soon have a new spot where they can meet up for dates, a café/restaurant/wine bar from dating app Bumble.
As a food critic, I rarely have time for carnal lust. My love for tender sirloins partnered with goat cheese aioli meant that I neglected to find a partner for my tender sirloins. But then I was assigned to review Bumble Brew, a real life version of the feminist dating app.
The cafe’s mission is simple: to create a much-needed safe space for attractive single straight women, where they can feel comfortable eating food and absolutely not being hit on unless they initiate the flirting. To truly test whether this cafe is the perfect date spot, I brought Chad. I had messaged him a few days ago on Bumble, “Who’s your favorite contemporary painter?” to which he responded, “u hot.” I was in.
The menu is simple, but each dish was hand-picked for one purpose: each food item is guaranteed to make you look hot while you eat it. So yes, it’s mostly hot dogs and bananas.
I was a little taken aback when our waiter, John, came over and instead of introducing himself, simply stood there. When Chad started to order a Bumble Bee’s Knees, John shushed him and turned to me. It was then that I realized that, like on Bumble, the woman must initiate the conversation. I said hello, and he proceeded to read the specials. Again to my surprise, he said if I didn’t find him pleasing to the eye I could swipe left and there was another waiter Hans from Germany who could replace him. Of course, I swiped.
Our new and improved waiter Hans (tall, beefy, German) said I had to order for the table. I ordered Chad the salmon, but we were interrupted by two people hardcore making out. Hans asked them if they met on Tinder. “Def” they said mid-makeout. Before I knew it, Hans was dramatically pushing them out of the restaurant, screaming that this restaurant was for Bumble couples only, “No Tinder Dates you sluts!”
I ended up eating the salmon and was impressed by its flavorful and succulent bite. On the other hand, the salad I had ordered had sub-par kale and very white dressing which I think could have ruined my lip gloss and didn’t serve their “date” mission.
For dessert the only thing available was a life size chocolate fountain. It was underwhelming, and I could tell they had simply melted a box of Russell Stover. Chad asked me to feed him chocolate covered strawberries but I told him that sounded like more of a Tinder vibe. We ate in silence.
At the end of the date, Hans approached our table. “So, you’re engaged now, yes?” I shook my head, defeated, and a look of opportunity crossed Hans’ face. “Look at the back of the menu.” It read, in fine print, “Bumble Brew waitstaff, custodians and cashiers are not off limits.” I may not have found love, but full disclosure: I hooked up with Hans in the bee-themed bathroom.
Overall, the dating app-turned-restaurant is proving to be a promising trend. Next on my list to review is “The Hinge Hi-Top’ which, like the app, is ‘designed to be deleted’: As soon as you find your mate, the Brooklyn location self-destructs.
Bumble Brew: B