If you can’t get away on that exotic vacation you’ve been daydreaming about this summer, you can experience the next best thing in Downtown Crossing — and you don’t even have to pack a suitcase. Inspired by global flavors, the Foreign Correspondents Club opened underneath The Merchant Kitchen & Drinks on Friday. It features a rotating cocktail menu dreamed up by bar manager Bryan Ames, and there’s also a variety of international small plates created by chef Ignacio Lopez, head chef at the restaurant.
Foreign Correspondents Club. Photo: Bryan Steele Photography
Among the inventive drink options are the Konbini Cocktail (green tea shochu, lemon, white miso, Japanese Knotweed honey and matcha powder) and the Treaty of Manila (Don Papa rum, tamarind liqueur, coconut water, curry powder and egg white).
“The cocktail menu will offer some very unique experiences,” said Ames via press release. “We’ll be working with traditional spirits like raicilla, raki, shochu and pisco, as well as regional ingredients, to give these drinks a true sense of terroir. The purpose of the FCC is to provide drinks and food that are transportive, and a space that encourages interaction, discussion and hopefully an adventure or two.” The space’s aesthetic matches the bar’s worldly vibe, boasting a vintage feel with old furniture, muted paint colors, and some souvenirs, trinkets and treasures. To access the FCC, guests check in with the host at The Merchant, who gives them a postcard that grants access to the space in true speakeasy fashion.
The FCC will be open from 5 p.m., Wednesday through Saturday, of this week before settling into regular hours of 5 p.m. to 11 p.m., Tuesdays through Saturdays. It will initially operate as a pop-up concept through Sept. 21, when it will close until some point in 2020.