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Speakeasy called Prohibition to open in Buckhead

GSD-02148

Paging Maxwell Smart! There’s a new speakeasy-style drinks place coming to Buckhead. But if you want to get inside, you have to secure a secret pass code, go to the special phone booth across the street and only then will you get the intel on the location of the secret entrance.

Is this for real?

Apparently so.  You can read all about it, below.

A little quick context: The speakeasy trend was big in New York several years ago. One of the most famous examples was Milk & Honey, started by mixologist Sasha Petraske. Of course, there was no press release, no Web site, no published number to call for the pass code. You actually had to know someone.

Petraske, by the way, is the fellow behind Drinkshop in the W Hotel downtown.

Here’s the press release:

Prohibition will open on Thursday, December 3rd at 56 East Andrews Drive in Andrews Square. This upscale Buckhead lounge has the feel of a 1920s underground speakeasy and no sign makes it more discreet. While it is not a members-only club, guests can only enter by securing a secret phone number and dialing it into an original antique London phone booth securing access though a secret entry way. While Prohibition is anything but dry, the master mixologists craft creative drinks from recipes in a leather bound, wood covered cocktail encyclopedia passed down for generations.

“We like to call our drinks prescriptions carefully compounded as our mixologists studied hundreds of lost cocktails, techniques, and the true art of an old style classic bartending that you just can’t find anywhere else in the South, ” says Master Mixologist Steve De Haan. “Using 300 lb blocks of hand chipped ice, only fresh squeezed juices, garnishes cut to order and the finest liquors available, our upscale, craft cocktails are without compare for quality and rarity of ingredients.”

The interior design keeps with the overall theme. With sconces from the 20s, the lighting is warm and subdued. The honey-onyx bar top and hand-painted ceiling complement the trimmed out oak paneling throughout the establishment. Guests will be able to cozy up in rich leather sofas by the fireplace and taste from the a special menu complete with desserts. Patrons can also enjoy a cigar from the house humidor with over 30 of the finest and rarest cigars found anywhere, such as OpusX, Padron 80th Anniversary and Davidoff. “You are sure to find the perfect cigar to complement your palette (sic) and evening,” says cigar aficionado Stan Weaver.

Prohibition’s hours of operation are from 5 pm – 2 am on Monday – Saturday. For more information visit www.prohibitionatl.com

34 comments Add your comment

uberVU - social comments

November 30th, 2009
5:30 pm

Social comments and analytics for this post…

This post was mentioned on Twitter by mamaerika: Can’t decide if this is cool or bad trendy.. RT @jdkess Buckhead speakeasy with a secret entrance! And a phone booth! http://bit.ly/5Qiprl…

Darin

November 30th, 2009
5:55 pm

Hmm…I’m intrigued but skeptical. Transferring an affectation-laden trend of New York City to Atlanta didn’t work so well before with B.E.D. Also, Atlanta didn’t have the speakeasy culture that developed in NY and Chicago, so there’s no cultural precedent on which to base nostalgia.

Nonetheless, I’ve had some really great pre-prohibition era drinks at Drinkshop. At least I know the drinks will be top notch.

Theresa Walsh Giarrusso

November 30th, 2009
7:06 pm

John — When we lived in New York City in the mid 90s there was a speakeasy movement there. Lansky’s was behind a Jewish delicatessen at night. You have to go through alleys and under a bridge to the back door. There were special knocks and you were peered at through a peep hole — It was so much fun. the club had matchbooks but no address on it — of course. We felt very cool to be there. It was also before the Swing craze hit the rest of the country and they had live swing bands there too — it was so much fun.

also liked a bar that was like someone’s basement in the 80s — had a Pac-Man game and couches — looked like your parent’s basement — something like The Johnson’s was the name — it was fun too.

When I get a jail break from the kids we’ll have to look for the speakeasy — we love the drinkshop. will they let 40 year olds in if we find it???

BlondeHoney

November 30th, 2009
7:13 pm

Theresa, it sounds like 40-somethings like you and I don’t have a chance of getting in…too trendy :)

george

November 30th, 2009
7:17 pm

i am sure their insurance carrier is thrilled with the idea that patrons have to cross the street to call a number to be admitted-to a bar!!! what a good idea for people who have probably already been drinking. the first one injured by a car while crossing back will own the bar and the owner’s personall assets if a good lawyer is involved.

A bit skeptical

November 30th, 2009
7:41 pm

Nothing worth going to has a 678 area code. Just kidding (well, sort of).

Didn’t Halo do the whole unmarked door thing years ago and for some reason decided despite good crowds that they were going to place signs all over the place? Eventually it got taken over by all the Hilfiger wearing cologne soaked boys from Jonesboro and Gainesville driving in to the big city for the night. They even started playing March Madness basketball games on the big screen. I’ve heard that they’ve tried getting back what they had but once its gone, its gone.

We shall see if in a few months Prohibition starts advertising on Q100 and has a feature on Comcast OnDemand. Perhaps they’ll stick with the concept but these things do tend to be very transitory.

Greg

November 30th, 2009
9:08 pm

Trendy and gimmicky. It will be huge for six months, then fade away into the same graveyard as countless other clubs that held the position of “the coolest new club in Atlanta” for a few moments. What is real stands the test of time. Manuel’s. Moe’s and Joe’s. The Earl. They succeed because they are real bars, not marketing concepts.

No way this place is still using the “secret phone number” gimmick 18 months from now, if it even makes it that long.

Lauren Vogelbaum

November 30th, 2009
9:11 pm

A friend of mine is gonna be tending bar there! If all the staff are as excellent as he is, I’m completely excited — classic cocktails are worth a little kitsch. I should be able to provide a bit of sneak-peak coverage before the opening… watch [Do Not] Feed the Editor for updates!

Been There, Done That

November 30th, 2009
10:36 pm

Yawn. The Safehouse in Milwaukee has been doing this schtick for years.

Bubba

December 1st, 2009
8:29 am

The best was Modell’s outside of Athens. Complete with illegal crap games, poker games, cheap beer and occasional raids by the Clarke County cops. It was real, not some trendy game for yuppies. So what if you spent the night in jail? That’s what made if fun.

Bubba

December 1st, 2009
8:31 am

Dang, I forgot to mention the fights.

Andre Hylton

December 1st, 2009
9:26 am

This sounds dumb. This place will have a liquor license and business license. Guests have to jump through a bunch of hurdles for no reason whatsoever.

jsf3000

December 1st, 2009
9:37 am

I’d rather go to Souper Jenny next door.

Ramona Clef

December 1st, 2009
10:13 am

Disney-fication of the universe.

I eat ATL

December 1st, 2009
10:33 am

I really don’t understand the pessimism folks. Give the place a chance. If this isn’t your kind of thing generally, then fine! Please go on about your business. I’m definitely interested, though I could easily see myself becoming frustrated if obtaining the password is too cumbersome. Also, why East Andrews? I think this would have been better suited to downtown/west midtown/midtown/edgewood type of areas, more older buildings and density in which to “hide.” Still, being one who enjoys classic cocktails and cigars, I am clearly gonna try it.

ATLien

December 1st, 2009
10:44 am

This location has been the home to many failed bars and lounged throughout the years, so I expect nothing less out of the latest gimmick they’re trying there.

Shadow 7071

December 1st, 2009
11:33 am

Maxwell Smart is an icon of the sixties spy vs. spy era e.g., James Bond, Our Man Flint, The Man From U.N.C.L.E and etc. Speakeasy’s are icons of the Prohibition era in 20’s and early 30’s e.g., Al Capone, Eliot Ness, The Syndicate, The Untouchables and etc. Maxwell Smart never got the secret pass code to enter a Speakeasy.

John Kessler

December 1st, 2009
11:55 am

Theresa – I went to one speakeasy in the Financial District that was a grungy slice pizza place in the front and a kind of Mexican hostess bar in the back. Wow…
Shadow: But couldn’t you see Maxwell Smart wandering into the wrong phone booth and ending up in the speakeasy rather than spy headquarters?

Shadow 7071

December 1st, 2009
11:59 am

Yes, I can see Max doing that. lol

Amanda

December 1st, 2009
8:37 pm

I want to go just for the novelty of it, but I’m guessing it’s probably meant to attract people much older than me. (No, I do not mean people wanting to relive the 1920s and 1930s!)

Jim R.

December 1st, 2009
11:20 pm

What’s a phone booth?

JRC

December 2nd, 2009
9:31 am

C’mon…a speakeasy with a press release? I can almost smell Drakkar…

John Kessler

December 2nd, 2009
11:49 am

JRC: Haha!! Seriously, right?

Muffin

December 2nd, 2009
11:51 am

JRC – they also have a Facebook page.

max

December 2nd, 2009
1:35 pm

exactly. the fact that you’re writing about it on AJC makes it not much of a speakeasy. more like a speakcheesy. :/

brian

December 2nd, 2009
1:42 pm

wow – for all those “wanna-be’s”. it must really hurt these people’s brains thinking so hard about being soooo cooooool.

local1

December 2nd, 2009
8:32 pm

I was invited through a friend last night. No New York attitude from the staff, thank god… Doesn’t fly in the south. They had lots of really comfy couches. I think what it will be best for is sitting down with friends and having a drink without a bunch of attitude or being hit on. The drinks were amazing, all classic, and it sounded like they were playing 20’s music in the background. The music wasn’t very loud so it was hard to hear. If I have any complaint, kind of smokey, but they said they had some plan for that. Cheers!

Covert Hops

December 3rd, 2009
9:27 am

What sort of beer selection will they have? Any good bar in Atlanta better have some top notch beers on tap and in bottles or it is not a good bar, but just another trends for the clueless.

And what ever happened to “On Tap” with Bob Townsend?

Lauren V.

December 4th, 2009
1:01 pm

Belatedly got that post up about the pub’s preview night! In summary: the drinks are tasty, and while the concept is indeed schticky, it comes off as cute and comfortable rather than pretentious.

http://grammarmonkey.blogspot.com/2009/12/restaurant-prohibition.html

DomesticGoddess

December 8th, 2009
4:38 pm

I have to say… I went to a preview/tasting night and LOVED it. No, we’re not NYC, but for ATL it was awesome. If you’re sick of the EAndrews college crowd, and want somewhere to enjoy a completely unique, delicious cocktail–trust me, I had about five different ones!–this is the place. You don’t actually cross the street to get in–don’t know where that came from–but I love the fact that they’re keeping it somewhat secretive. That way they can choose what kind of crowd they let in, and keep in. If they aren’t liking the crowd that ends up getting the #, they’ll change it. I just love a smaller, more intimate, upscale place where you can have a killer night, but also be a grown up. 40 year olds def are NOT too old. And I’m in my 20’s. So there. :) OH, and did I mention they have Absynthe?! Fun fun…

DomesticGoddess

December 8th, 2009
4:40 pm

Ugh, get over yourselves, naysayers! I went to a preview/tasting night and LOVED it. No, we’re not NYC, but for ATL it was awesome. If you’re sick of the EAndrews college crowd, and want somewhere to enjoy a completely unique, delicious cocktail–trust me, I had about five different ones!–this is the place. Couture cubes, everything made to order, delicious menu. You don’t actually cross the street to get in–don’t know where that came from–but I love the fact that they’re keeping it somewhat secretive. That way they can choose what kind of crowd they let in, and keep in. If they aren’t liking the crowd that ends up getting the #, they’ll change it. I just love a smaller, more intimate, upscale place where you can have a killer night, but also be a grown up. 40 year olds def are NOT too old. And I’m in my 20’s. So there. :) OH, and did I mention they have Absynthe?! Fun fun…

DomesticGoddess

December 8th, 2009
4:41 pm

Ugh, get over yourselves nay sayers! I went to a preview/tasting night and LOVED it. No, we’re not NYC, but for ATL it was awesome. If you’re sick of the EAndrews college crowd, and want somewhere to enjoy a completely unique, delicious cocktail–trust me, I had about five different ones!–this is the place. Couture cubes, everything made to order, delicious menu. You don’t actually cross the street to get in–don’t know where that came from–but I love the fact that they’re keeping it somewhat secretive. That way they can choose what kind of crowd they let in, and keep in. If they aren’t liking the crowd that ends up getting the #, they’ll change it. I just love a smaller, more intimate, upscale place where you can have a killer night, but also be a grown up. 40 year olds def are NOT too old. And I’m in my 20’s. So there. :) OH, and did I mention they have Absynthe?! Fun fun…

Tanya Z.

December 9th, 2009
9:16 pm

So I’m definitely intrigued. How does one obtain the “password”?

DomesticGoddess

December 10th, 2009
12:43 am

Aaaaaand apparently my computer has been hacked by the Green Fairy. Sorry for the trio there folks…