What’s Metropole’s secret ingredient when it comes to their bespoke cocktails? Beverage manager Chris Brown. One of Metropole’s original bartenders when the restaurant opened in 2012, Brown is largely responsible for conceptualizing the drinks menu and working with his team to turn unique ingredients (charred jalapeños anyone?) into liquid joy.
With warmer weather nearly upon us, Brown is ready to alchemize anew. “We work closely with the kitchen to see what can be sustained throughout the season,” he says. “There are a couple of flavors I definitely want to mess with when spring hits.” Brown stresses that it’s a collaborative effort. He and his team start with a brainstorming session, and he’ll give them his wish list of potential flavor combinations. A week or two later they start their initial tasting of new drinks. This season’s roster will likely include a surprising ingredient: Yogurt. Brown, whose mother is Korean, traveled to South Korea last year on his honeymoon and fell hard for a popular yogurt drink. “They’re like yogurt sodas. Not a lot of people know about them here,” he says. He’s playing around with flavors like Concord grape and Szechuan peppercorn as he concocts his own version of the Korean standard. “The yogurt lends acid but also creaminess,” says Brown. “If I see something, I nerd out and go for it.”
Check out our Best Restaurants 2017 review of Metropole