Iron Monkey

This friendly restaurant and bar is housed in a converted four-story brownstone and has tables on two floors -- including the rooftop patio, which is popular in the summer when one can enjoy alfresco dining. The menu features fusion cuisine -- American with elements of French, Italian and Asian -- and runs the gamut from basic burgers and pastas to more imaginative offerings like the herb-roasted chicken topped with maple and walnut sauce and the herbed shrimp satay wtih avocado and apples with oregano-orange vinaigrette.

It draws a large after-work crowd of young Financial District types who converge on the bar for the 5PM to 7PM happy hour. On Friday nights, progressive, fusion, and traditional jazz acts play to entranced listeners on our rooftop. Or maybe they're still dazed to realize that the Monkey imposes no cover charge to those looking to jazz up their weekend evenings.)

They also offer a good, reasonably priced Sunday brunch, during which the patrons seem almost as interested in the unusually placed iron monkey sculptures that show up throughout the restaurant. Call the restaurant or check their Web site for information on the occasional wine tastings and details of local delivery.

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