While only less than a mile away from owners Sean Muldoon and Jack McGarry’s other award-winning sister bar, The Dead Rabbit Grocery and Grog, BlackTail’s atmosphere and cocktail recipes are worlds apart. BlackTail transports you to 1920s Havana, serving up colorful, punchy, and, at times, fruity cocktails.
Last fall, we met with BlackTail’s bar manager and cocktail aficionado, Jesse Vida, to get the full story behind this beautiful new bar at the very southern tip of Manhattan in Battery Park.
BlackTail is partially inspired by the Highball Express, a fleet of private planes that transported wealthy New Yorkers right off the Hudson River to Havana, Cuba, during Prohibition. The second they were over international waters, they could drink freely.
“We’re telling the story of an American-style bar in Havana during Prohibition,” Vida told Business Insider. “Havana became not only a place to go have fun, but a place to be seen.”
From the decor to the menu, BlackTail pays homage to that time period, but with a modern twist. “We’re putting a modern flair [on our cocktails] so we’re using modern ingredients, and bringing the cocktails to what the palate level is now compared to what it was,” he said.