Right in the heart of the Financial District is the last place you'd expect to find one of the most serene spots in Manhattan, yet that's exactly where Le District lies tucked away. Complete with cafes, fresh markets, upscale dining experiences, and an impeccable bar, Le District is a one-stop shop for quality French-inspired fare.
We stepped away from the hustle and bustle of the city to sit down with Stefan Bachvarov of Le District's bar, appropriately named Le Bar, to learn how the surrounding market at Le District provides him the ingredients and inspiration to create his gorgeous and ingenious cocktails.
How long have you been bartending?
I've been bartending over 15 years now. It started out as just a summer job as a kid. That summer was so busy for us that I had to help work the service bar, and I fell in love!
Favorite classic cocktail?
Favorite part about working at Le District?
I like learning something new every day thanks to all of the amazing people around our bar. I also love the diversity of our clientele.
What makes your bar unique?
At Le District, we have everything. From our Michelin star chef Nico Abello's incredible creations, to our coffee, our fresh fruit and vegetables we use, to our cocktails and wine - there is so much to work with and create. Being around like-minded people is so encouraging and creates a fantastic atmosphere.
What cocktail do you hope people ask for?
Something classic with some French inspiration, like Armagnac, Calvados, or Cognac, that we can pair with something like Belle Isle Moonshine to create a fun, new drink.
Favorite cocktail to sip on when no one is looking?
Honey Habanero Margarita!
Favorite menu item + cocktail pairing?
Steak Tartare and Vieux Carre Nord.
Can you share a Belle Isle creation with us?
We always like to have a variation of a margarita on our cocktail menu. When we found Belle Isle Honey Habanero, we knew we had to use it! It's the perfect balance of sweet and spicy - helps you pass the day as you guzzle down some oysters!
Shake all ingredients over ice, then strain and serve in a chilled coupe with freshlt cracked pepper on top.
- ¾ oz. Belle Isle Honey Habanero
- 1 ½ oz. Altos Olmeca Tequila
- ½ oz. Cointreau
- ¼ oz. Belfoir Ginger Syrup
- ¾ oz. lime juice
- ¾ oz. pineapple juice
Recipe by Stefan Bachvarov of Le District | Photos by Matt Evans