Mike Pierce didn't expect his career to be in a bar. He left the club scene for a short, six-year purgatory in a corporate cubicle before returning to the hospitality industry three years ago, this time for good.
When he started at the Emory, the Ferndale bar was just five years old. He was bartending a couple of nights a week and managing the floor. Since then, he's seen not only his position, but the bar itself evolve. In fact, he says in the last year, the Emory has undergone quite the metamorphosis.
Big changes have happened across the board, and the food, beer, and cocktail menu has gotten a big face-lift. Now they're focusing on carrying a well-curated selection of quality beers, and the entire staff works together to create a new menu every quarter.
At the moment, the summer cocktail menu is still in use, but that will change soon. When we stopped in last week, Pierce poured us up the Sedgewick, a drink that will be featured on their fall cocktail menu (which is scheduled to start sometime next week). It's a beer-cocktail, and one they experimented on quite heavily to make warm and boozy for winter.
It's strong and tasty, and what Pierce calls "a man's drink. The New Holland Beer Barrel Bourbon is very prominent, but tempered by the citrus of the fresh orange garnish.
1 ounce New Holland Beer Barrel Bourbon
Half ounce Grand Marnier
House-made honey simple syrup
Build over ice, top with 3 ounces Lagunitas IPA.