Benjamin Schiller, the talented bartender who’s behind the creative drinks at The Sixth in Lincoln Square and The Berkshire Room inside the ACME Hotel downtown, will helm a new bar inside the Dana Hotel & Spa in River North. That was among the announcements Fifty/50 Restaurant Group made today, as details have begun trickling out on what will replace Vertigo Sky Lounge, the rooftop space that closed in January.
The news drop also included a seafood restaurant on the Dana’s ground floor which would eventually replace Freestyle Food + Drink. Fifty/50 has been expanding their portfolio of restaurants, and this would be a similar step to opening Steadfast, their fine-dining restaurant on the ground floor of the Kimpton Gray Hotel.
The remodeled rooftop space will specialize in large-format, sharable drinks, according to a news release. Fifty/50 and Dana haven’t shared a name, but plan to open in early 2017.
Getting back to Schiller: His new bar, located on the hotel’s second floor, is only described as “theatrical.” No, bartenders won’t be sharing lines from Hamilton. It’s about the presentation of drinks. A Fifty/50 spokeswoman clarified and said the drinks will be “over the top and extravagant.” After what Fifty/50 did with Bunny Slope at the ACME, in terms of hot tub/ski resort retro fun, perhaps they’re looking for inspiration from Tom Cruise’s 1988 film, Cocktail.
The Dana is operated by Rebel Hospitality, the same group behind the ACME.