Cheers March 2013

Cheers is dedicated to delivering hospitality professionals the information, insights and data necessary to drive their beverage business by covering trends and innovations in operations, merchandising, service and training.

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SCENE the mixology hype," Stratigos says. Recent creations include Micha Caliente, with lemon-lime soda, jalapeno vodka, orange liqueur, cranberry and verdejo; and BlueEyed Boy, combining Bombay Sapphire gin, mint, elderflower and peach bitters. Each effervescent elixir is priced at $9, and Lure sells about 50 of them per evening. "The fabricated, almost commercial feel to a prebottled carbonated cocktail was just the right thing," Stratigos notes. ENHANCING THE EXPERIENCE The restaurant's theme is subtle nautical, with a decor palate of neutrals and grays, along with distressed wood. Large-scale, bold nautical design elements include a wooden anchor chain and lighting reclaimed from vintage ships. This enables Lure to drive home the feel of a fish house without resorting to kitsch. To properly pique patrons' palates with the multitude of mixology, staff undergoes comprehensive and proprietary training. Stratigos started the education program six years ago at all seven concepts of the Atlanta-based Fifth Group Restaurants. "This program is designed to build confidence and passion for all things liquid," he says. Beverage 18 | MARCH 2013 managers lead staff in a 13-unit roadmap of topics called "The Period Focus" covering food pairing, spirits analysis, selling and tasting. In the kitchen, executive chef David Bradley's philosophy is to serve the freshest, sustainably caught seafood (local when possible), in preparations and flavors that make an impact yet don't overwhelm. He has an affinity for cured and preserved products (sublime cocktail partners, he says), and dabbles in spirited cuisine. Oysters on the half shell are served with a shochu-based mignonette, while mussels are bathed in Allagash White Ale. In one of Bradley's favorite food and cocktail pairings that gives a nod to the Big Easy, any of Lure's available punches stands in for a Hurricane, washing down cornmeal-coated fried oyster sliders served po'boy style with watercress and Cajun remoulade. It's easy-drinking, eclectic and fun—like Lure's drinks program itself. Kelly Magyarics is a wine and spirits writer and wine educator based in the Washington, D.C. area. She can be reached through her website, www.kellymagyarics. com, or on ANDREW LEE, EXECUTIVE CHEF DAVID BRADLEY, ANDREW LEE Lead bartender Brent Gatehouse, above, overseeing Lure's action. Left: Seared scallop crudo with sugar snap peas and horseradish, and a Micha Caliente, one of Lure's premixed, bottled cocktail (lemon-lime soda, jalapeno vodka, orange liqueur, cranberry, verdejo).

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