It’d be impossible for us to know what you consider “cool,” but we’re pretty confident Medium Cool fits the bill. You’ll find this moody, windowless bar in the basement of the Gale South Beach, an Art Deco hotel erected in an era when sub-sea-level basements still seemed like a good idea. “Dress nice, please,” Medium Cool’s website politely requests. It’d be smart to reserve yourself a table via email, too. (Though you might be too cool for that.)
The vibe here is ’70s glam, South Beach-style: It’s got a velvet rope out front, a disco ball and a glass ceiling, with plenty of bronzed surfaces and banquettes puffy as marshmallows. The music programming is stacked with DJs Wednesday through Sunday, and mellower moments like live jazz and samba setting the stage in the evenings.
Beverages come under the creation of Naren Young, who’s definitely cool in the cocktail world—he’s also at the helm of Sweet Liberty and formerly the creative director of Dante NYC, back when it was dubbed the World’s Best Cocktail Bar. So, what’s a cool cocktail like? It's a super-smooth sazerac with chocolate and rose, an espresso martini spiked with peppermint, a cosmo sweetened more delicately with yuzu, and an old fashioned rendered just a bit more complex with salted maple.
The place is open from 6pm until basically whenever, and if you slide in early you’ll likely find a spot to lounge for a while. Late nights are for the cool kids, dancing, sipping, slung over the bar and pressing their cheeks together just before the flash goes off. For us, “cool” is a feeling, and Medium Cool 100% has it.