I never noticed just how macho New York's bar scene is until I experienced its opposite at the Riddler. Here, an elegant older woman greets you at the door; a massive photo of a luminous Jacqueline Bisset hangs over the bar; and pride of place on the drinks menu is a section of glasses from women winemakers. Actually, make that bubbly producers, because this is a Champagne bar, so the majority of drinks on offer are vino of the fizzy sort. As one would expect at a place devoted to Champagne, bar snacks are elevated: raw oysters, $75 ramekins of caviar, white truffle risotto. But despite the hoity-toity food and drink (and in many cases, prices), The Riddler manages to maintain a wonderfully laid back party vibe thanks to a hip-hop soundtrack (played at a conversation-enhancing level), dim lighting, and somewhat squashed seating, which leads to intimacy. The Riddler is an offshoot of a Champagne bar in San Francisco and, as I learned after my first two visits, women-owned. Brava!