The Black Cat has lived many lives since the '60s, when it was the site of historic gay protests. This is its cushiest. “It's so New York,” you'll hear people saying about the tablecloths and green leather booths. That may well be, but it also harks back to classic local joints like Hamburger Hamlet and the Grill on the Alley. The Village Idiot owners are responsible for the lovingly restored venue, where cocktails lean to scotches and aperitifs. The menu tries hard to pin down American pub food, but catfish with corn pudding is crushed by a chicken-fried crust, and bone marrow—the base for escargots—is overcooked. A killer double pork chop and dreamy kabocha soup give us hope.