If you’ve walked in the Bishop Arts neighborhood recently—maybe during Bastille on Bishop or on a recent Saturday night—you can’t help but have noticed the new development. There’s several hospitality-leaning construction projects clustered around an open courtyard with a Persian tile fountain under the branches of a venerable oak.
These are the first hospitality foray for Exxir, a real estate development company founded by the Nazerian family and headed by the sibling team of Michael and Natasha Nazerian. I’ve been peering at the project as it nears completion. And now it’s time to roll out the first. Tonight, cocktail bar Botanist will have its soft opening.
The cocktail lounge centers on a vast copper bar and dimly-lit, vintage-feeling ambiance; floral references in cocktails match the plants draped over the bar and the botanical illustrations woven into the design. Think apothecary meets tippling curiosity shop.
Botanist will serve classic cocktails like an Old Fashioned, Negroni, Last Word. A sneak peek at a few specialty cocktails:
Bob Ross: Jalapeño-infused beet tequila, lime juice, agave, dry Curaçao.
Sotol, So Hot: Desert Door Sotol, grapefruit juice, agave, squeeze of lime.
South of Davis: Broker’s Gin, lime juice, simple syrup, Angostura bitters, mint leaves, cucumber.
Detox: Chareau Aloe Liqueur, lime juice, yellow chartreuse, honey syrup, muddled basil leaves, sage powder, arugula.
The Mitchell: Cynar, Del Maguey Vida Mezcal, lemon juice.
Under the direction of Jeremy Hargrove (you might know him from the now-closed Madrina and Proof + Pantry), Botanist will be joined by its courtyard-sharing sister spots Paradiso and Good Companions.
The Nazerians have spoken about their desire to create a meaningful outdoor space. It’s worth reading about how they see this little enclave as one way to combat the ills of the new, car-based, alienating city, one shading oak at a time. Will we encounter what we need, what we crave in what we can only hope might be a garden of earthly delights? We’ll find out.