Bar guide: it’s easy to settle into a bar stool at the Burleigh


Do you know that feeling when you walk into a bar and instinctively know that you are going to have a wonderful experience? This is what I hope every time I visit a new establishment (for me), and what happened when I walked into the Burleigh.

As you enter the charming Kennebunkport Inn, a Federal-style house built on the Kennebunk River in the late 1880s by coffee and tea merchant Burleigh S. Thompson, the Burleigh is on the left hand side. After crossing a comfortable lounge area with a fireplace, you enter the bar area.

Decor consists of dark walls, dark wood, navy leather seating with silver upholstery studs, thoughtfully placed mirrors, and a navy leather bench seat with cushions along one of the walls. . The wooden bar display area has lead paneled glass, there are hooks under the bar and the dim lighting made me look a lot more attractive than I actually am. The music was playing softly and a rainbow may have appeared as I sat on what was arguably the most comfortable bar stool I have ever sat on – and I sat on a lot. of bar stools.

Cinn City and Blood Orange Negroni are among the outstanding cocktails at Burleigh. Photo of Angie Bryan

My drinking mate and I had a hard time deciding which of the craft cocktails to try. I’m a huge Negroni fan, so I couldn’t resist the call for the $ 14 Blood Orange Negroni. It didn’t disappoint, but the real star of the show was my friend’s $ 15 Cinn City, a spectacular combination of bourbon, brown sugar and cinnamon syrup, and Fee Brothers molasses bitter. Basically, it’s the cocktail version of a Snickerdoodle. We then decided to split the $ 15 Go “Fig” ure (rye, sweet vermouth, mashed fresh figs, and bitter orange) – it was like biting into a juicy, but tangy fig. I made fig martinis with fig vodka, but the combination of fig and rye was new to me. Think of me as a fan. We went back and forth to figure out which drink was the best – they’re both at the top of my list of cocktails I tried in 2021 (and again, that’s a lot of cocktails).

The Burleigh bar stools are some of the most comfortable you can find. Photo of Angie Bryan

The cocktail menu also listed a fall rum punch, a spicy orange-pomegranate margarita, a drink called Perfect Pear (pear, lime, cranberry and spicy agave vodka), a blackcurrant mule, a Cosmo blueberry and a drink. called Killer Bee (infused with rosemary gin, lemon, honey syrup and prosecco). Many of the spirits come from Batson River Brewing & Distilling, down the street in Kennebunk. There’s also a smaller menu of specialty mocktails ($ 9 to $ 15), 10 beer choices ($ 5 to $ 8), and a dozen wines by the glass, all at $ 12 or $ 13. A few sea bass snacks such as Spinach and Artichoke Dip ($ 10), Jumbo Shrimp Cocktail ($ 18), and Three Bean Chili ($ 12) are also available.

This winter, The Burleigh Bar Cart is offering a series of classes on how to make a variety of classic drinks. Classes are held most Saturdays and Sundays through February from 3:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. for $ 25 per person, which covers not only instruction, but also drink tastings and light snacks. Upcoming classes include Time Flies When You’re Have Rum (December 18-19), Whiskey & Rye – A Relationship on the Rocks (January 8-9), Spiked Coffee & Cocoa (January 15-16) and more. . Other winter specials include 15% off all bottles of wine on Wednesdays and all day happy hour on Sundays.

The Burleigh could prove to be your new place of winter bliss. He is certainly one of mine.

Retired diplomat Angie Bryan writes about Maine cocktail bars while making as many puns as her editor allows.

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