"Caffe Vivaldi exudes an old-world European languor-a small irony, since it was opened in the '80s by an industrious emigre from Pakistan. A weathered bench runs along one wall; the wall opposite, cluttered with somber black-and-white portraits of classical composers, is recognizable from films by Al Pacino and Woody Allen. For the past decade or so, the cafe has featured live music nightly: jazz, classical or folk, depending on the night." -JazzTimes(Jan-Feb'05)
When Joseph Brodsky won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1987, he gave some of interviews to the world press, sitting down at Vivaldi and enjoying his favorite drink. When Woody Allen and Al Pacino wanted to make movies featuring the timeless quality of Greenwich Village they came to Vivaldi.
Over the last twenty years, Vivaldi has been a haven for New Yorkers and creative people from the world over. However, it has always been a gathering place for musicians. It is named after the Italian composer, Antonio Vivaldi.
In the mid 1980s, Caffe Vivaldi had a significant role, along with radio stations WQXR, WNYC & WNCN, in the resurgence of New Yorkers' interest in classical music. Ishrat Ansari, the owner of the Listening Room at Caffe Vivaldi, played selections from his vast private collection. For hundreds of his customers, that was their first introduction to Bach, Beethoven, Mozart and other masters of Western Classical music. The opening of the first Tower Records in the neighborhood, further helped the phenomenon along. Every evening, after their first listening to a recording at Vivaldi, customers would walk over to Tower Records to buy a copy.
In addition, there were weekly live music events at Vivaldi. It was an eclectic mix of original pop, jazz, western classical, Pakistani and South Asian classical and World music. On persistent demand of music loving New Yorkers, we have now extended that weekly event to daily live music at Vivaldi.
With live music seven days a week, The Listening Room at Caffe Vivaldi has become New York's premier spot for original music by uniquely creative singer-songwriters. For an authentic Greenwich Village experience, we have fine dining, full bar, coffee drinks and desserts combined with great live music.