Get ready for a whole lot of magic in a very small package at Steamy Hallows, the new Harry Potter-inspired cafe in the East Village.
Located at 514 3/4 E. Sixth St., Steamy Hallows riffs on the title of the final Harry Potter book Deathly Hallows and is designed to feel like your local coffee shop if you were a witch or wizard commuting through Diagon Alley.
It’s also extremely cozy: There are stools for just four plus a little more standing room, so expect to wait to enjoy the show of coffee drinks made with the flair of a magic trick.
Baristas will make the unconventional coffee drinks — like a sweet Love Potion No. 9 3/4 infused with raspberry, and the instant favorite Sage Latte to cleanse your aura — in front of guests using potion-brewing methods like muddling herbs in a tiny cauldron and flashes of green fire.
Given the cafe’s size, the baked goods options consist of six kinds of cookie presented in a steamer trunk as if you were ordering from the trolley witch on the Hogwarts Express.
It’s all the work of themed bar mogul Zach Neil, who was also behind the Will Ferrell bar Stay Classy and the still-kicking Tim Burton-inspired Beetle House, among many others.
Having been just a little too old for the series when the books first came out, Neil got into it about two years ago thanks to his then 7-year-old daughter and has since become a fan himself. “For me, I wanted to do something where my kids can actually go, and I wanted to do something that kind of tied into mixology because I love the aspect of bars and restaurants,” he says.
Steamy Hallows is an unofficial passion project, though Neil says he did reach out to Warner Bros. and various other Potter-related entities to figure out where the copyright line is. Equal parts Halloween, gothic chic and Potter-inspired, fans won’t feel like they’re missing out — there are Butterbeer lattes and cookies, wands and even floating candles.
You can even get there in a way that’s as close to magic as the 21st century has gotten. Neil is working on an augmented reality experience using an interactive map with clues to collect that lead to the shop — and even a free coffee for the most dedicated Muggles.
Steamy Hallows officially throws its doors open on Monday, Feb. 18. Note: The cafe is cashless.