Aced Out

Have a drink at Manhattan's hippest new hotel bar

Despite the buzz surrounding the arrival of the hyper-hip Ace Hotel (located in a former SRO planted on grubby lower Broadway, no less), the recent unveiling of its Breslin lobby bar has slipped under the radar.

Consider this your good fortune. Before the fashion-forward hordes invade the soaring, mosaic-tiled space, claim a broken-in suede couch, eye the curios (taxidermied critters, mercury flasks, science posters) and get acquainted with the chalkboard drinks menu, which includes fresh twists on classic cocktails and vibrant new concoctions.

The Hound on Fire adds a lip-tingling chile-salt rim to the standard gin-and-grapefruit Greyhound, while the Flatiron is a bracingly aromatic blend of ginger beer, lemon-whiskey bitters, basil and a hefty bolt of Rhum Clément. Even the Ace Old-Fashioned–in which smoky aged tequila stands in for bourbon–is new.

Although the hotel's forthcoming Breslin restaurant (from Ken Friedman and April Bloomfield of The Spotted Pig and The John Dory fame) remains under wraps, you can keep hunger at bay with the bar's offerings of salty scratchings (fried pork rinds) and crunchy potato chips flavored with malt vinegar and sea salt.

Or try crafting one of the Ace's lively cocktails yourself; this thirst-quenching riff on lemonade is an ideal summer sipper–perfect at home or far from it.

The Bitter Lemonade

Recipe by Dennis O'Connor, Breslin

Makes one drink

½ ounce Aperol

½ ounce fresh lemon juice

¼ ounce simple syrup

Ice

4 ounces Prosecco, preferably Nino Franco Rustico

Lemon twist, for garnish

Pour the Aperol, lemon juice and simple syrup into a cocktail shaker. Fill the shaker with ice, shake gently and strain into a Champagne flute. Top off with the Prosecco and garnish with a lemon twist.

Ace Hotel, 20 W. 29th St. (at Broadway); 212-679-2222 or acehotel.com