The Dewberry is gorgeous. From the gleaming brass bar to the perfect spheres of ice that bob in frothy drinks, everything is elegant and simple. Behind the bar in The Living Room, the bartenders wear white dinner coats and slick their hair stylishly to the side.
The cocktails put the emphasis on spirits. You won't find lots of juices and infusions here. Instead the elixirs are deep and potent and utilize cordials, bitters, whiskey, campari, among other artisanal spirits.
Classic cocktails make use of Fernet Branca and Benedictine, while the specialty drinks might require some explanations from the bar staff. Del Maguey Vida, Mancino Chinato, Pierre Farrand Ambre? I'd have to ask Google to give me more information, but the names and the ingredients matter much less than what they do with it.
The Icher & Glass is bartender Ryan Casey's version of a classic Blood & Sand. Ichor in Greek mythology means the blood of the gods, which was rumored to taste like ambrosia and nectar. Made with Compass Box Whisky, a Scotch blend created by an American in the U.K., orange, Heering cherry liqueur, sweet vermouth and dry curacao, the Icher & Glass is a lovely beverage to sip on in such a refined setting. But our favorite turned out to be the Panic Button.
Bourbon, Campari, Averna Amaro, Heering cherry liqueur and lemon are shaken into a coupe glass with a globe of ice. Described as a shaken Boulevardier, we enjoyed a couple of these throughout the evening and would highly recommend.
The Dewberry and Ryan Casey's drink list have been getting heaps of attention. Imbibe named The Living Room bar of the year and the James Beard Foundation put it on the longlist for Outstanding Bar Program. If you're looking for a grown-up space with mysteriously delicious cocktails, sidle up to the stools at that beautiful bar and let them treat you right.
The Dewberry is at 334 Meeting St. The Living Room bar is open every day at 3 p.m.
— Stephanie Barna