Best Bartender

Nat Harry at Revival Bar + Kitchen

A competent bartender knows the difference between tonic and soda, can capably whip up a two-ingredient well drink, and may be able to do something mild-to-moderately artful with a lemon peel. A good bartender can do all of the above, plus design a signature cocktail here or there. A great bartender doesn't just replicate or build on what's been done already, but completely reimagines what a cocktail can and should be. Nat Harry, as you've surely already guessed, is a great bartender: Relentlessly adventurous, well-studied but never pretentious about it, and personable even at the bar's busiest moments, she's the kind of bartender to whom you can rattle off a vague list of likes, dislikes, and current cravings and who will then make exactly the drink you didn't even know you wanted, and who's equally at home whipping up drinks with ingredients like mole bitters, cilantro syrup, and chamomile liqueur — all house-made, of course — as she is making a standard manhattan, margarita, or gin and tonic. Well, "standard" might be an understatement.

Previously in Best of the East Bay

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