Brunch with the SoHo Host Club

Question: “Why don’t we have an event that focuses on just chill, beautiful atmosphere, and time together?”

Answer: Sunday Brunch and Beyond

The Question was posed by Alexandra Honigsberg, the president of the SoHo Host Club, the chivalrous group of young men who specialize in mingling and engaging people in conversation at parties started last July by Honigsberg and her cohort Kim Kindya. For the Answer, Honigsberg and the SoHo Host Club teamed up with John Wong of 1 Event Plan for a Sunday Brunch at Bun Soho, New York City’s only 4-star Vietnamese restaurant.

Bun Soho, Vietnamese restaurant in Nolita

Venturing away from its home base of the SoHo Gallery for Digital Art, the SoHo Host Club held its first event with alcohol – normally the hosts serve tea to guests. Honigsberg had toyed with the idea of an affair for the the 21-and-over crowd, and through Wong’s connections, she chose the relaxed environment of the well appointed Bun Soho, where they offered a savory prix fixe menu and a sake tasting flight.

There was a bit of confusion over exactly what the prix of the prix fixe menu actually was, but once that was settled Bun Soho’s waitstaff seemed to relax. Since the four hosts in attendance weren’t serving tea, they almost seemed unsure of what to do at first. But with the J-rock tunes of Gackt, Hyde, and Buck Tick playing in the background, they remembered that conversation is their forte.

Members of the SoHo Host Club

“The guests always say that their favorite part of our events . . . is the time they get to spend with each other and the hosts,” says Honigsberg, who used the occasion to introduce a new host, Timothy Focking Floro.

It was an intimate gathering, as most of the SoHo Host Club’s regular guests weren’t there due to either the rain or the AIDS Walk. The handful of guest who did attend enjoyed chatting with the hosts while noshing on the tasting menu that included nem of lamb, pork rib, beef salad, and pho.

The afternoon also turned into an impromptu anime lesson, as Honigsberg, Asian Pop Culture Examiner May S. Young, and host Andy Seto gave yours truly pointers on what to watch. Honigsberg favors Bleach, Death Note, and Full Metal Alchemist, while Young recommends Samurai Champloo and the absurdist comedy found in Cromartie High School and Crayon Shin-Chan. Seto, an architect, doesn’t watch a particular anime for its storyline; he’s more into the structure and architecture of the animation.

Good food, good music, and good conversation amongst new and old friends. Seems as if Honigsberg found the right Answer.

Fans of the SoHo Host Club enjoy a meal with the hosts

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