Behind one of the most striking and beautiful paintings in the city—a festively bright 70-foot-tall geisha by Irish street artist Fin DAC, with live plants growing as her hair—we will soon have a rum-happy Cuban bar by Ricky Gomez, named the U.S. Best Bartender of the Year in the world's largest cocktail competition in 2012. At Palomar, opening by the beginning of March at 959 SE Division St., Gomez hopes to evince the "crumbling paradise" of his heritage with black and white encaustic tile, Cuban street food and a whole hell of a lot of cocktails. The building's mural honors, in part, the bar. The bird perched on the woman's shoulder is a Cuban trogon, the national bird of Cuba.
About Matthew Korfhage
Matthew Korfhage has lived in St. Louis, Chicago, Munich and Bordeaux, but comes from Portland, where he makes guides to the city and writes about food, booze and books. He likes the Oxford comma but can't use it in the newspaper.