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Bar Spotting: Andrew Tarlow’s Achilles Heel

achilles heelWe’ll happily travel to Brooklyn for good food, but good drinks take a little more convincing. With five successful eateries to his name (Diner, Marlow & Sons, Marlow & Daughters, Reynard and Roman’s) Andrew Tarlow is Brooklyn’s most prolific restaurateur.  And now he’s got yet another title to add to his impressive resume – flourishing bar owner.

Situated along the industrial, Greenpoint waterfront, Achilles Heel is meant to evoke the old-timey saloons and provisions shops that catered to area dockworkers in the 1900’s.  In fact, a few of the trappings in the artfully scruffy speakeasy have been gathering dust in the space ever since then, including the mirrors, hardwood bar, and a single stool, which Tarlow had replicated several times over by his carpenter.

bartenderAnd Tarlow fully intends to serve the longshoreman that still work sporadic hours in the shipyards just outside of the window, by serving early A.M. Lagers, Stouts and Ales, and even a selection of “morning highballs,” like Aperol Spritz’s and Harvey Wallbangers.  But since Greenpoint is just as densely peopled with young, on-the-go artists nowadays, there’s also a selection of George Howell pour-over coffee and espresso drinks available, along with six or so variants on classic cocktails to enjoy later on in the evening, like the “Happenstance” with gin, aperol, herbsaint and lemon, the “Latter Dagger” with rum, velvet falernum and ginger beer, and the “Third Arm” with bonded bourbon, cassis and pernod.

cocktailSince Tarlow has such fine, artisanal products at his disposal, the small but thoughtfully curated food program at Achilles Heel is much better than it needs to be, including freshly baked croissants from Reynard, scones from Marlow & Sons, and charcuterie platters and sandwiches featuring bread from She Wolf (the bakery that operates out of Roman’s), meats and cheeses from Marlow & Daughters, like Salumeria Biellese Speck and Tomme Delay Raw Goat, as well as duck liver mousse, beef jerky, mortadella, country pate and liverwurst, all made in house.

With another popular establishment in his ever-growing dynasty, it seems the tireless Tarlow has yet to discover his own Achilles Heel.

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