Vivo Tapas Lounge
167 Ferry St, Newark, NJ 07105
Phone: (973) 465-9181
Fax Number: (973) 465-9181
VIVO Tapas Kitchen • Lounge
VIVO Spanish Restaurant & Lounge
Vivo Spanish Rstrnt & Lounge
VIVO Spanish Restaurant
Bike Parking: No
Wheelchair Accessible: Yes
Cuisines: Spanish, Mediterranean, Caterers, European, Continental, Bar & Grills, Pizza
Alcohol: Full Bar
Takes Reservations: Yes
Outdoor Seating: Yes
Price Range : Average
I am a frequent visitor at Vivo Lounge in Newark, NJ. The restaurant has proven itself through and through each and every visit. Often out-of-town clients of mine will request some advice regarding the whereabouts of the authentic Spanish cuisine and tapas that has become a staple of the Ironbound area. Without hesitation, I can confidently direct all inquiries to this gem, located in the heart of Ironbound right on Ferry St.
The laid-back ambiance that exudes class and cleanliness will have you feeling right at home. The servers, bartenders and upper-management are always friendly, helpful, and extremely knowledgeable of menu items and drink specials. With reasonable prices and a wide variety of delicious authentic tapas, you are guaranteed to leave 100% satisfied. I INSIST that anyone considering a visit to Vivo Lounge, DO IT! Enjoy!
Food is horrible, Overcharge on bill / shady practices, Music is good but crowd sux.
Upon arrival, the place was DEAD. Literally, we were the only people there so I had two feelings - either this place is more of a late night place and we'll get great service since no one is there or no body dines there for a reason. I should have followed the latter thought.
Had a sirloin steak in a peppercorn sauce (figured it would be hard to mess that up) - steak was tough, sauce was rather bland with very little depth of flavor. The girl I was with ordered some chicken with Spanish chorizo which she too stated was nothing special and the chicken seemed dry. Needless to say, we ate because we were starving and the better Tapas place in Newark (Mom Pau - awesome!) was packed without any vacant tables. I should have waited... I've spent time in Madrid and know what tapas are - thankfully I didn’t set myself up for disappointment on that front by ordering them from Vivo.
We left and had coffee at another great spot in Newark. We took her car and left my car parked near Vivo since parking is rather difficult to find. When we returned to my car, it seemed like Vivo had turned into a night club - heard the music from outside and saw the bouncer. Music was great, house music lured me right in. We decided to give them another shot and just get a couple of drinks. HAD TO PAY A COVER! - that’s just crazy, it’s a tiny little lounge in Newark but at this point I didn’t want to turn away so I just paid.
We went straight to the bar and got a couple of drinks and a couple of Patron shots. I asked for a cup of iced water as well however was given a bottle of water that I later found out cost me $5 - all I wanted was to cut my drink a little. The music was awesome so the night started to get better - drinks started to kick in as well haha. We scanned the place and the crowd was a mix of Latin Americans, some urban thug-looking people, and what seemed to be regulars. NOT A GOOD LOOKING CROWD AT ALL. Place didn’t really fill up but wasn’t empty either. Don’t bother wasting money on any bottles or the "VIP area" as it is smaller than some public restrooms plus the DJ and MC keep walking thru the tight spot - didn’t seem comfortable or worth it AT ALL.
We were there for about an hour or so then decided to leave. Asked for my tab to be closed out and after looking at the receipt I noticed that not only did they charge me for top shelf on specific drinks when I clearly did not ask nor received top shelf. After confronting the bartender, he was not willing to adjust the price. The owner/manager/top bartender (I heard someone call him Arielle- not sure who he is) spoke to me and was very reluctant to change the price however I was adamant so he did. I then shortly realized that a 19% TIP WAS ALREADY INCLUDED!!! WTF? Am I in Miami all of a sudden with a bunch of European tourists?!?! VERY SLIMELY and SHADEY since the gratuity line is where the tax line usually is. I was only with 1 other person so it’s not like we had a large group where gratuity is normally already incorporated into the final bill. NOT ACCEPTABLE.
Needless to say - I will not be returning to Vivo for any reason at all as there are plenty of better places to enjoy an evening in ironbound Newark. It’s sad because the bakery that is attached to Vivo is great. This place needs to go out of business and a real tapas lounge needs to open in its place.
This Spanish restaurant is on a side street fight off Ferry which is the main strip of the Ironbound Spanish/Portuguse restaurant section. It is now my absolute favorite, I am planning my birthday party here!
We were about to go to one of the typical spots, & just decided to look at the outside menu for the heck of. Glad we did! Enrique, the host came outside to greet us (and that was fortunate as there is a bakery/diner type place in front of it on Ferry street, easy to get confused.) The decor and music were nice, but the real star was the food.
First, the portions were huge for the prices and for the fact we ordered all tapas. I cannot imagine what the entree's look like! , it is easy to spend a lot at Spanish restaurants.
Of course large portions of mediocre food do not impress me, so I was glad to find out that the cuisine exceeded my expectations. I am not from Spain, but I travel there often, so I'm a bit particular. After having toast with warm garlic butter (mmmmm...) We ordered a bottle of wine ($28, Enrique recommended it) and the following items:
Soup of the day -
Vivo salad - HUGE, raisins, pine nuts & soft goat cheese with greens, excellent & god to share
Fried Calamari - like they serve in Spain, not like what you get in every bar in ny
Grilled Shrimp - came in an olive oil sauce, plentiful, & cooked well
Stuffed Shrimp - Very good, very large shrimp
Stuffed mushrooms - HUGE portobellos, stuffed with cheese & potato & breaded, excellent!
Pulpo (Octopus) - the best I've ever had, super fresh and cooked perfectly
Piquillos with crabmeat & creamed shrimp - tender peppers with
Spinach and white bean soup - very tasty & so obviously homemade
The service was fantastic, and Enrique put on some music & danced with me which was fun.
They have flatscreens everywhere with the soccer game and a sizable bar with extra bar tables, so I'm going to pop by for a drink here & there. They have dancing after 10:30, but you would need to call for the details.
Great food & service, Big recommend!
I love Vivo! I have spent many a Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights there, all of which were awesome. There is always either a DJ or a band making sure that the crowd is pleased. Plus, they have great food. What more could you want?
Did you have a bad experience at VIVO? That's strange, because I am there at least three times a week, and I believe that the food, service, and drinks could not be better. First of all, the place is beautiful....you can tell from both the outside and inside that the owner puts alot of work into it. Second of all, I have been to Vivo many times for lunch, dinner, and recently their Sunday brunch, all of which were worth the money. Also, the place is packed five nights a week.....so they must be doing something right.
Despite its decor, Vivo Lounge is not worth the annoyance of being there. I went to Vivo Lounge for after work tapas& drinks and stayed for the nightclub. The transition was completely sloppy. The tapas were incredibly over priced, and there was no drink menu. The garnishes on the drinks were disgusting. At first I ordered a Dirty Martini, and I got just that. The olive juice must have been months old, and the olives itself tasted soggy and spoiled. After that horrible drink, I ordered a GreyGoose& Tonic. The limes were days old, and the "GreyGoose" tasted like cheap vodka. The bartenders are extremely rude with one another and set off a negative vibe for the lounge. Vivo Lounge staff practically pushed us off of our seats because they were setting up for the nightclub.
The crowd began to show around midnight. They were moderately dressed neat, however most of them looked underage. The place is relatively small, but the extreme amounts of underage teens, hoodlums, and no class crowd filled up the place. There were no vents in the lounge and it got incredibly musty. At the point I left the place and swore to never return.
Bad and nasty service. The crowd is a bunch of underaged high schoolers. The bouncers are rude and perverted. The place should be called "MORTE LOUNGE!" instead of VIVO, because it just SUCKS!! Wouldn't reccomend this place to anyone who has real class. If you're an underaged teen or old brazilian, the place is right for you! Every one else should avoid this dump.