Much-admired cocktail specialist Eric Johnson joined Juniper & Ivy earlier this year to help the Little Italy restaurant up its cocktail game and will lead the bar program at its adjacent concept, The Crack Shack, which is getting set to open next month. Johnson, a veteran bartender who trained with cocktail legends Sam Ross (Milk & Honey, Atta Boy) and Phil Ward (Mayahuel), was on the opening team behind Craft and Commerce, El Dorado and Noble Experiment before launching Sycamore Den, where he earned Eater's Best Bartender award in 2013.
Johnson shared his new cocktail list for the chicken and egg-centric eatery, where each drink will be priced at $10. The all day menu launches with morning kickstarters that include a Bloody Mary made with green chile vodka and a bloody mix spiced with house-barreled hot sauce and a whiskey-based coffee cocktail fueled by Bird Rock Coffee Roasters. Johnson is also making use of the beer and sparkling wine that will be on tap; sessionable Steigel Radler gets spiked with pisco for a beer cocktail and prosecco plays into the bubbly Pallino made with gin, Orchard Peach and lemon.
All of the restaurant's 100 seats are outdoors, so Johnson geared his concoctions to be on the refreshing side. Available for lunch and dinner is the Layback, made with pineapple rum, house curacao, coconut and tiki bitters and the Hot Mess, a mix of mezcal, Ancho Reyes, honey, lime and grapefruit while fall flavors are reflected in the Play Date, made with apple brandy, almond, pomegranate, lime and grapefruit and the Hay Ride, a blend of rye, spiced rum, lime, ginger and cinnamon. He also has plans for hot drinks that can be sipped by the fireplace.