Brooklyn's on Boulder Street, founded by cousins Ian and Nick Lee, is a speakeasy-style bar disguised as a swanky hat shop for Lee Spirits. The cousins opened the doors to its tasting room, Brooklyn's on Boulder Street, in 2015 to showcase their floral, pre-Prohibition-style gin and original recipes for gin-based cocktails. This gave the founders a way to serve classic drinks, such as the Bee's Knees, gin fizzes, and the famed Aviation cocktail directly to consumers. Lee Spirits also added more liquors to their company's production list, making their own staples to take the place of branded Campari, vermouth, and absinthe.
Voted the best bar in Colorado Springs multiple times and named a top speakeasy in the nation by the Travel Channel, this is a spot any lover of high-end and deliciously crafted cocktails should put on their agenda when visiting beautiful southern Colorado.
The Director's success story
Ian became passionate about the hospitality industry in high school and planned to have a career in the field but wasn't exactly sure where he would make my mark. He held many initial positions in several establishments as he worked his way up in the field. He then landed a 'server' position at Brooklyn's where his career transcended.
Now, he is the director of operations for Lee Spirits' tasting rooms which would never have been possible if I didn't first serve customers at the speakeasy then become lead bartender over time.
The best thing about running a unique-themed bar
Nick has many favorites as he leads a great team that manages two tasting rooms. His first love are the guests that range from cocktail experts to first time tasters of gin. He embraces the trust they put in him to help match their pallets to the bar’s cocktail menu.
Additionally, he loves their team of distillers, product formulators, and the bar staff. They are lucky to have so many freedoms provided by ownership that allow them to create an ongoing cadence of new menu items and unique formulations for their cocktails, such as their recent foray into pistachio liquor, as an example.
The most unforgettable experience at Brooklyn's on Boulder
Nick can’t forget the easy placement of his first original cocktail to the menu, which doesn't come smoothly at Brooklyn's on Boulder Street. Each season, the team submits original cocktail ideas to the team and only a few are chosen.
His first drink to appear on the menu was the "Ain't got that Swing" which paired dry gin, jasmine-pineapple liqueur, dry vermouth, falernum, and maraschino. It was a thrill to watch customers enjoy something unique he had created for them. In fact, it never gets old to submit and see an original cocktail idea be folded into the seasonal menu.
Brooklyn's on Boulder X-Factor
Making the bar unique is that they are a true speakeasy in Colorado Springs. Many new customers over the years comment on how they walk by the storefront without knowing it is a bar. Brooklyn’s on Boulder also manufactures all their products—from spirits to liqueurs—to mixers such as their original cola to the timeless music they play.
A classic watch for a classic vibe
‘Classic’ is the best word that describes Brooklyn's. When customers walk into the speakeasy, the team use their cocktails, interior design, and music to transport them back to one of the most energizing times in America's cocktail history. And the best watch that suits this experience is the AEGIS 44 Milanese Hermes Gold, which is beautiful, timeless, and matches many styles.
The Grayton Quinary's cocktail counterpart
Featuring a beautiful, rich blue color, the lovely Grayton Quinary is a match made in heaven with the Aviation, as this classic gin cocktail comes with a sky-blue hue. On a side note, Ian also highly recommends the Negroni—a delicious and classic cocktail.
Brooklyn's on Boulder's source of inspiration
The bar is inspired by the fact that they offer a classic bar experience that’s not limited to any 'rules'. This means they are empowered by their leadership and customers to constantly push the envelope on service and cocktail formulation.
The team at Brooklyn’s on Boulder also desires to continuously develop great cocktails and a timeless speakeasy experience for their guests while continually challenging themselves to create products and cocktails the marketplace hasn't experienced before coming into their bar.