YOUR REVIEWS: CAKE SHOP

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Mornings at Cake Shop are made of typical cozy caf� fare -

coffee, pastries and other baked goodies. By day, a secondhand record store

opens. Around happy hour, the lower level opens as a bar and live music space.

We asked the Review Crew to check it out.

Renee Lau, 23, Brooklyn

At Cake Shop, looks can be deceiving. I never expected to find a bar

downstairs. Both the cake guy and the bartender were friendly to those a little

too tipsy to make difficult decisions about cake and beer. The bar area

downstairs was a bit smelly and the paintings were quite bizarre. But I

wouldn't hesitate to go back, even if it's just for the availability of cake at

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an indecent hour.

Grade: B(+)

Jen Schwartz, 23, Massapequa

Do me a favor? Think about the hipster Empire Records vibe and the natural

high of live music, then add the idea that coffee can combat alcohol's evils

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and toss in some funky art. Got all that? Well, so does Cake Shop. If you dig

the city club scene, thumping techno music and $10 drinks, do not go to Cake

Shop. But if you're down with punk/rock, daily double happy hours, cool decor

and browsing through old albums and records or sipping coffee, definitely take

the trip downtown and eat it up.

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Grade: A

Dina Passaro, 25,

Jackson Heights

Job: Magazine production coordinator

Guilty pleasures: Watching "American Idol," reading US Weekly and buying

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everything in the Pathmark brand.

Dina says: The Lower East Side is a great place to hang out. The vibe is

chill and unpretentious. The people are cool and the places are cozy. Cake Shop

fits into the mold. It's a great place to go after a movie for a snack and

more, like I did. The record store selection is sporadic but easy to browse. I

purchased my first Miles Davis LP, which the clerk mentioned was hard to find.

The small selection made it fun to find random picks, such as Debbie Gibson and

Bel Biv Devoe. The cupcakes were especially sweet and the coffee was just

right. And the staff was approachable and friendly.

Grade: B (+)

Greg Harrison, 22, Baldwin

I would have rather gone to "The Candy Shop." Whoever heard of a

hard-liquor-free bar anyway? Maybe this just wasn't my scene - which is fine. I

can respect a different atmosphere and culture - but the grunge retro setting

didn't do it for me. On a positive note, the beer and wine bar is half price

during happy hour. So if you are looking for some live music from the next big

thing in indie rock (if there was a first big thing), stop by. I have other

plans, so I can't make it.

Grade: C

Cake Shop

152 Ludlow St.,

Manhattan

212-253-0036

www.cake-shop.com

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