We cheered when we heard the news that Juniper & Ivy had scooped up Jen Queen, the talented bartender who has made her mark all over this city, from creating Monello's popular house made vermouth to reinvigorating Saltbox' drink list.
When the new Little Italy restaurant officially opens on Monday, it promises to have an ambitious, innovative cocktail program. During our interview with Richard Blais, the chef said that the bar's cocktails may be even more daring than his savory menu and mentioned a tableside drink that would employ liquid nitrogen.
Queen told Eater that the showcase molecular cocktail will rotate, but the debut concoction is a play on a Pimm's cup, an "adult beer float" made with gin, cucumber-mint water and raspberry lambic.
The menu will also feature a daily drink called "Queen's Choice", inspired by seasonal ingredients sourced from local farms. Queen has a culinary approach to cocktail building and says that she'll take cues from Juniper & Ivy's kitchen, telling Eater that "a good wine list pairs well with food and a great cocktail list reflects the food."
A portion of the cocktail list will change weekly; among the opening libations is a twist on the classic gin cocktail, Bee's Knees, which Queen's adding a pine-honey gomme and an amaro float to and calling it the Bee's Niece. Another of Queen's traditional favorites is a Paloma; her version, named Messenger Pigeon, mixes tequila with lime, celery bitters and house made arugula soda.
Queen's also playing with the fancy toys in Juniper & Ivy's kitchen, using a machine that emits ultrasonic sound waves to do a quick bitters extraction or "barrel age" a cocktail in mere hours.
Juniper & Ivy's bar will open at 4 p.m. daily, an hour before dinner service begins. Here's a drinking tip for Eater readers: ask for an Industry Handshake at the bar and receive a shot of house made amaro paired with a beer.
· Juniper & Ivy [Official Site]
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