The 10-seater bar is often full, but a handful of two-tops and booths in Bar Mercado's cozy keeping room are available. The menu offers Spanish classics like the Kalimotxo with Tempranillo and Coca-Cola or the street cafe-inspired Basquet Case with gin, Bruto Americano, bittersweet orange liqueur and lemon topped with Spanish cider. Even non-vodka drinkers will appreciate the sweet and savory interplay of the Hala Madrid with vodka, Sloe gin and Lillet blanc set off by a sprig of rosemary and topped with cava. Krog Street Market, 99 Krog St. NE, Atlanta. 404-480-4866, barmercadoatl.com.
Located at The Battery Atlanta in the shadow of SunTrust Park, C. Ellet's bar seamlessly melds steak, oysters and cocktails with sports. Two mirror-projected screens play one game or another yet are unobtrusive by design. Like sister restaurants Holeman and Finch and Restaurant Eugene, the cocktail program is classically minded, with a beautiful Boulevardier, a Sidecar made with reposado tequila and a solid gin martini. But rum takes center stage here. Order the Rum Sazerac made with port-finished rum, agave and Herbsaint or the rum-based play on the gin classic Last Word named Poor Fellow. The Battery Atlanta adjacent to SunTrust Park, 2605 Circle 75 Parkway, Atlanta. 678-996-5344, c-ellets.com.
She is a seasoned beverage professional and she’s sharing her bartending pet peeves, her favorite cocktail and more. (Erica A. Hernandez/AJC)
Worth a second look
On the scene for a year, the travel-inspired the Consulate in Midtown has proved themed restaurants can be done right. Every quarter, a specific country's flavors are chosen by the spin of a wheel and interwoven throughout the food and beverage menus. Currently, Ethiopia is stamped in the passport. Beverage director Mike Jones has developed his program to include flights of rum, tequila and mezcal, and an entire page is dedicated to dessert and fortified wines like Madeira. Jones inserts the flavors of the chosen country through the Visa portion of the cocktail menu. The Hapi Cocktail is a masterful example on the current listing — a daiquiri made with cachaca, rainwater Madeira, house-made collard green shrub and lemon, which blends the influences of east Africa with the Caribbean and Brazil. 10 10th St. NE, Atlanta. 404-254-5760, theconsulateatlanta.com.
Bon Ton promised to bring New Orleans and Vietnam together in a harmonious marriage of flavors when it opened last winter. Mission accomplished. The restaurant and bar first endeared itself to guests with a neon sign reading "Fancy Service" and one of the cheekiest Instagram accounts in Atlanta. The bar offers drinks like the frozen Ward Six Cup (Pimm's cup) and Vietnamese Irish Coffee served in plastic, French Quarter-style to-go cups and strong, expertly concocted cocktails like the Fifty/Fifty/Fifty with gin, sherry, Lillet Blanc and absinthe and the Hanoi Hurrah with rum, brandy and Vietnamese coffee. The Sazerac on tap and a New Orleans French 75 (with cognac) are must orders for the classic cocktail nerd. 674 Myrtle St. NE, Atlanta. 404-996-6177, bontonatl.com.
Check out what the AJC Fall Dining Guide 2017 has to offer: