The former Red Devil Lounge space is officially back in action today as Harper & Rye, an attractively designed new cocktail bar from Jamal Blake-Williams, the former bar manager of Tipsy Pig and Mamacita. His partner in the project is Nate Valentine (co-owner of those spots, as well as Padrecito, Blue Barn, and Umami), and the bar is, adorably, named for Valentine's children. It's intended to be a slightly more upscale, but still unpretentious, spot for a beer or a cocktail, complete with a $1 pool table (it's where the stage used to be) and plenty of seating for large groups—it has a capacity of nearly 200.
David Ruiz, who runs Padrecito's bar, is behind the cocktail menu, which focuses on speedy drinks that don't sacrifice flavor. There's a sizable selection of highballs, including rye with Sidral Mundet apple soda and Campari with Carpano Antica and birch beer, and punch jars intended to serve groups of 4, with options like the Oaxacan Peach (amaro, mezcal, ginger beer, grapefruit, lemon, agave). And of course, standard cocktails are available too, like the Dante & Diego (aged rum, banana, Benedictine, vermouth, bitters). The 12 draft brews are a fairly standard greatest-hits list (Lagunitas IPA, Trumer Pils, Chimay, Guinness, Abita Purple Haze) with a couple of local offerings, like Magnolia's kolsch, thrown in.
Valentine's cousin Britt Hull, who did Padrecito's decor, is also the designer here, and the space is definitely a looker, with patterned wood floors, a big arching back bar, leather couches, and a piano. Hours are 4 pm-2 am Monday-Friday, and 2 pm-2 am Saturday and Sunday.
· Red Devil Lounge to Become Harper & Rye [~ ESF ~]
· Tipsy Pig Vet Takes Red Devil Lounge Space [~ ESF ~]