Lure Fishbar's Nautical Cocktails: We Try Them All
Lure Fishbar, at the St. Moritz at the Loews Hotel Miami Beach, has just opened after about a year's worth of anticipation.
Photos by Laine Doss Robert Ferrara mixes up a nautical cocktail at Lure Fishbar.
The décor is more Bar Harbor than Bal Harbour -- teak woods are accented with blue plaid and brass shined to a mirror finish. Black-and-white photos of the Queen Mary grace the walls leading to the dining room. An outdoor bar -- again, more teak than tiki -- should be open in time for Art Basel and will serve a casual menu, along with drinks (although diners can choose to order from the full menu as well).
Lure Fishbar's menu features a veritable bounty from the sea, but we were most interested in the specialty cocktails, created by Robert Ferrara. Each cocktail features a nautical-themed name like the Full Mast or the Catch and Release, but they're not all rum-and-fruit concoctions. Ferrara has created a full-spectrum cocktail list ranging from pink creations perfect for après beach to a boozy take on the Arnold Palmer.
The mixologist who was named Miami New Times' Best Bartender 2013, says he has no set format for creating a cocktail. "Sometimes I'll say to myself, I need more rum drinks on the menu, so I'll try to work with that spirit, or maybe I'll have another inspiration, like a tea that I want to work with. Or I'll just be watching football and an idea will come to me that I have to try."
Asked how far a drink must deviate from a standard recipe to be considered new, Ferrara says, "Some people just change out one ingredient and call it something different. But if you substitute, say, a different garnish or bitter in a Manhattan, it's still pretty much a Manhattan. I think you have to have at least two very unique ingredients to call a cocktail your own."
All specialty cocktails cost $14 (except for the Lure bloody mary, which is $16). There's also a large wine and sake selection by the glass, as well as local draft beers from Funky Buddha, Wynwood, and Cigar City ($8 each). In addition, regular mixed drinks start at $9 -- a bargain by South Beach standards.
Short Order was invited to try a few of Lure's nautical-inspired cocktails and wound up sampling the entire dozen. Here are our favorites: