Openings Across the South
Tucked beside Nashville’s Bode hotel, Sidebar brings a bit of eclectic, Americana bohemia to the city’s SoBro district. There’s music kitsch and paraphernalia along the walls and a few well-tuned guitars at the ready, should the mood strike. Behind the bar, beverage director Meg Hoberg has put together a thoughtful list of drinks, like the smooth and luscious Wallflower, a gin egg flip laced with jasmine and hibiscus tea, and the Romero, a bracing tequila number offset by torched rosemary. To nibble, there’s a local charcuterie board, pulled pork sliders, and a barbecue chicken flatbread.
A new brewery opened in Miami earlier this spring, bringing a large tropical garden, a taproom with beers crafted on-site, and an ode to Cuba’s oldest beer. Cervecería La Tropical, originally debuted in Cuba in 1888 as the country’s largest beer producer through the 1960s. As the founding families migrated to Miami, their recipe became the popular La Tropical’s La Original Ambar Lager. The historical Cuban brewery is brought back to life through the Miami outpost featuring a taproom and brewing program led by brewmaster Matt Weintraub, as well as a Caribbean-Latin restaurant showcasing the signature cuisine of acclaimed chef Cindy Hutson.
Charleston, South Carolina
Atlanta-based New Realm Brewery is expanding to Charleston with a facility on Daniel Island that will include an on-site brewery, restaurant, outdoor patio, and music and venue spaces. While New Realm’s brewmaster Mitch Steele will continue to drive the lineup of award-winning beers and special releases, food and music will also play a featured role in the new site with a casual American menu and frequent live performances.
Speakeasy-themed bar Red Phone Booth opens in Buckhead later this Spring, offering the prohibition experience, offering 1920s-era cocktails, a collection of rare whiskey, bourbons, and scotches, and a humidor filled with cigars. Patrons will enter the bar through an antique red phone booth where the secret code must be dialed to be admitted. This is the third location of the downtown Atlanta bar, with an outpost in Nashville, from restaurateur Stephen de Haan who also owns Amalfi Pizza and Saito: Sushi, Steak, and Cocktails.
A new cocktail bar recently opened in Bellyard Hotel boasting city skyline views and an expansive outdoor terrace just in time for al fresco drinking season. Part of the emerging Interlock development in Atlanta’s westside neighborhood, DrawBar offers an extensive cocktail list and more than 250 spirits in addition to an elevated bar bites menu.
The much-anticipated Vacancy Brewing opened earlier this month in Austin’s East Congress neighborhood. Inspired by head brewer Brent Watson and co-owner Sara Hamza’s cross country road trip experience, they aimed to create a sense of wanderlust at the vibrantly colored brewery and tap room. The adventurous influence is continued through their product, which “will draw from traditional flavor profiles and imagery from treasured destinations, beginning with the brewery’s home state of Texas,” says Hamza. Visitors can expect three year-round styles and a rotating lineup of seasonal styles, as well as local wines on tap and boozy frozen treats.
The Houston-area welcomed the latest outpost from Texas winery Messina Hof earlier this Spring. According to a release, the wine destination advertises a sprawling 83-foot-long wine bar, a tasting room equipped with two dozen wine taps, private tasting rooms, and an expansive outdoor patio. While the Lone Star State winery’s main production will remain at its flagship Bryan vineyard, wine will be produced on site at the new Richmond outpost, as well as possess an open-kitchen concept restaurant where Messina Hof wines will be infused into dishes like pork chops served with fig agrodolce and Texas Gulf shrimp served in tomato, fennel, and sauvignon blanc broth.
- by Erin Byers Murray
- by Amber Chase