Juan Padró, Katie O'Shea and Max MacKissock are behind Culinary Creative, and they've tapped Ash'Kara bartender Nicole Lebedevitch as operations partner and beverage director. Developer Matt Joblon of BMC Investments is also in on the project. Lebedevitch, who's also a pianist who graduated from the Berklee School of Music, has created a seasonal roster of cocktails that take inspiration from the bar's floral history (see the sprigs of lavender and rosemary adorning glasses as examples) and also balance bar knowledge and creativity with unique combinations.
Padró adds that Cherry Creek seemed like the right location for the bar because of the neighborhood's changing scene. He admits that he didn't know the district very well, so he rented an apartment near the bar for six months to get a feel for it. "The demographic is shifting younger," he observes. "There's an appetite for something a little different."
The cocktail menu currently comprises fourteen house creations divided into four categories: sparkling and low ABV, light and refreshing, rich and stirred, and no-alcohol, which all range from $11 to $15. There's also a pair of large-format cocktails that ring in at $120, but they're intended for at least four people and can serve up to ten. Ingredients include handmade infusions and syrups flavored with botanical barks, woods, spices and flowers, augmenting the floral theme of the bar.
The food side of the menu, designed by MacKissock, is small but well-appointed; the caviar service — topping out at $135 — feels particularly appropriate for the neighborhood. You'll also find cheese and meat boards, Spanish tinned seafood and a relish tray. A fresh-baked soft pretzel, a Maine lobster roll and Jonah crab toast on a housemade English muffin round out the small plates.
Forget Me Not, designed by Joblon and Robin Smith, is fronted by a patio surrounded by a white picket fence, giving the impression that you're just stopping by a friend's house. A glance through the front accordion window reveals a white marble bar top, upholstered bar stools and banquets, and shelves holding art objects and knickknacks on the white-painted brick walls. Padró points out that the roof was completely rebuilt to add multiple skylights that bathe the space in sunlight during the day.
Forget Me Not opens to the public on Wednesday, March 10, with limited seating capacity and mask regulations in accordance with current city and state rules. The bar will be open from 3 p.m. to close (which has yet to be determined) every Wednesday through Sunday.