Barbarossa, the cocktail bar in the old Bubble Lounge space with a theme rooted in the area’s Barbary Coast history and the space’s past as a prison, is inching closer to open. The bar is technically in soft open now, but with a very limited drinks menu and no food. November 19 marks the official launch, which is when Christina Cabrera’s (The Progress, Old Bus Tavern) full menu of 11 drinks, all named after either a criminal, prostitute or brothel from the Barbary Coast era, will be available. The drinks run the gamut in spirits, resulting in cocktails like the Lady Killigrew (rum, Pisco, Kalani coconut rum, banana cordial, allspice, lime) and Bandit’s Way (Irish whiskey, bourbon, cereal milk, maple, old fashion bitters, Hawaiian nutmeg). There will also be 12 beers on tap, wine and champagne pulled from the Bubble Lounge collection. As for food, consulting chef Eddie Lau created a small menu of raw bar (primarily oysters), vegetables, charcuterie and cheese and dessert.
The real calling card of Barbarossa, though, is the space. Millions of dollars went into the 6,000-square-foot space, which architect Jacek Ostoya (Whitechapel, Novela) designed based on the space’s past as a prison and the neighborhood’s as a red light district. That comes out in details like shackles above the bar, lots of red lighting and photos of women in bondage. Once completely open on November 19, Barbarossa’s full hours will be Monday through Wednesday from 4 p.m to 12 a.m., Thursday through Friday from 4 p.m. to 2 a.m., Saturday from 6 p.m. to 2 a.m. and Sunday from 6 p.m. to 12 p.m. Check back for a full look inside the space next week.