And the plot thickens over at 1022 South, the popular craft cocktail lounge that's served up tasty alcoholic confections on Hilltop since 2009.
General manager Chris Keil – also known as Chris Langston - had been the establishment's driving force since the bar opened. But, on Monday, he posted a farewell letter to patrons, saying he had been fired and that he planned to open a rival lounge around the corner.
On Thursday, Keil elaborated that his firing was related to Hilltop Kitchen, or HK, which he plans to open at 913 Martin Luther King Way, a space occupied by Tempest Lounge from 2005 until late last year. Keil said he signed a lease in January, has since obtained a liquor license and plans to be up and running by June 1.
“It's going to be another craft cocktail lounge,” he explained. “We're gonna focus a little bit more on Latin American spirits, so mezcal, tequila, rum - that kind of stuff. But we're still going to have a pretty expansive back bar, so we're gonna have a little bit of everything for everybody.”
In his farewell letter, Keil cast doubt on whether 1022 South would continue for very long in its current form, writing "the owners don't share my values." Neil Harris, one of those owners, did not return calls seeking clarification. But 1022 South is still open, and a Craig's list ad has been placed seeking a new general manager and bartenders.