Its drink menu is highly creative but seems tailored too much to cocktail geeks.
It’s only natural that Art of the Table relocated to Stone Way North. All the cool kids are there. All the bar hoppers are there.
The farm-to-table dining restaurant, which reopened three weeks ago, now boasts a cocktail lounge almost as big as its entire old restaurant space.
You can’t miss it. The new 2,700-square-foot space feels like a geometric funhouse — quadrilaterals of wood overhead, an enveloping half-circle over the open kitchen, and the hypotenuse of the bar slanting through the lounge.
The lounge, called Under The Table, has about two dozen seats, and like its fine-dining restaurant, it aims high. Challenging mixing ingredients such as the rice-based spirit Batavia Arrack are used, and less-familiar ingredients — sherries, vermouths and Calvados — get starring roles in cocktails.
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The cocktail with curry-infused bourbon, green chartreuse, artichoke liqueur and coffee bitters is called “The Devil’s in There.” The name must refer to the curry-infused bourbon. Short of an exorcism, this winter tipple needed some soft notes to smooth out the curry spice.
Other drinks fare better.
The foamy cocktail “Kegs & Eggs” is like a Ramos Gin Fizz with Belgian ale notes, but it works. It mingles rye with coriander, orange, IPA, grapefruit bitters and egg white.
“Border Raid,” its best drink, borrows from the French vermouth-cassis cocktail Pompier, with some added absinthe and bourbon for depth. It’s a clever concoction that reverses the pecking order, with vermouth in the lead and bourbon in a supporting role.
This bar staff is a creative bunch with much potential. But if the lounge wants to lure all the foot traffic on the other side of its floor-to-ceiling windows, the cocktails need to be more approachable. This is a menu tailored too much to the cocktail geeks and not enough to the mainstream who want nothing more adventurous than a tweak on a Manhattan.
Art of the Table, 3801 Stone Way N., Suite A, is open 5-10 p.m. Wednesday-Sunday; closed on Monday and Tuesday (206-282-0942, artofthetable.net; note: its webpage is not updated yet, but check out its Facebook page).