freeman on the move, reiner’s new spot and 500,000 mojitos in chicago
The Altamarea Group added Eben Freeman to its team as director of bar operations and innovation. In this position, Freeman will oversee the bar program at each of the Altamarea Group’s existing restaurants, with an initial focus on the soon-to-open New York City projects Osteria Morini and Ai Fiori in The Setai Fifth Avenue. He will also oversee, train and add capability to the group’s bartenders and beverage staff across various expansion initiatives. Freeman last worked in NYC at Tailor, as well as once creating cocktail menus at Eleven Madison Park, Wallsé and The Red Cat. Most recently, he spent the past year in Asia working with corporate clients on training and bar program development.
In the space that was once the just-mentioned Tailor in Manhattan, Julie Reiner of Flatiron and Clover Club is about to throw open the doors of Lani Kai, named for a beach on Oahu, Hawaii, Reiner’s home state. Drinks will feature lots of fresh tropical fruit and juices, Hawaiian tea and spice syrups.
In celebration of a record breaking 500,000 Mojitos sold since opening five years ago, Chicago’s Carnivale is holding an Ultimate Mojito Contest, with customers invited to submit their unique and creative Mojito or Mojito smoothie recipes. Carnivale will choose five finalists, who will be invited back and judged by a local celebrity panel on Tuesday, Sept. 28; the event is part of Carnivale’s anniversary week. In addition, Carnivale University Fall Semester will kick off in October with Mojitos 101. Carnivale’s mixologist Daryl Freeman will lead this hands-on class, featuring two recipes from Carnivale’s signature cocktail menu.