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Launched in 2014 by journalist Sean Baker, Med City Beat is an independent news source covering government, business and culture in Rochester, Minnesota.

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Cocktail lounge to open along Historic Third

Cocktail lounge to open along Historic Third

A pair of well-known faces in the Rochester restaurant scene will be behind the bar when Bitter and Pour opens to the public this December.

The bar, to be located in the former Doggery space at 18 Third Street Southwest, will offer up libations and small plates in a relaxed, lounge-style atmosphere, said Andrew Ferguson, general manager of Bitter and Pour.

Ferguson will be joined by Josh Kral, who will run the bar’s beverage program. Together, they have a combined 35 years of industry experience. Patrick Hass and John Pacchetti are also co-owners of the business.

The group has spent the last few months gutting and rebuilding the entire underground space. When it opens on December 14 (preliminary date), patrons can expect a completely new experience, said Ferguson, who noted that much of what was built was done custom by local contractors.

“It looks really sharp — and I’d say that even if I wasn’t part of the business,” said Ferguson, who most recently worked at the nearby Half Barrel.

The drink menu for Bitter and Pour will feature craft cocktails — including some classics and some originals — along with a carefully-selected list of wines and craft beers. The cocktails will be made with syrups, bitters and juices all created in-house from scratch, said Ferguson.

“We bought a juicer and are going to do our own freshly-squeezed juices everyday,” said Ferguson. “We’ll also have a dedicated day every week just for syrup making.”

New to the space, Bitter and Pour will offer food. While they will not have a full kitchen, they will serve up small plates, such as charcuterie boards.

There will also be an extra event space, located in adjacent area that once housed a fitness studio. Though the room won’t be ready to go right away, Ferguson said they have already started having conversations with local restaurants about potentially bringing in catering for special events.

Bitter and Pour will join a growing number of new drinking and dining establishments popping up downtown — a trend that Ferguson believes will only raise the bar and bring more people to the area.

“There’s no better spot to be than Historic Third,” he said. “You’re surrounded by so many other successful businesses, and the more people you can bring to that area, the better everybody does.”

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