Downtown Tucson has new gin mill: Juniper bar opened this month

A new bar opened in Downtown this month: Juniper, 222 E. Congress St., is a gin-centric establishment where people will be able to enjoy craft cocktails, beer and more.

The concept was inspired by European bars, specifically gin bars in Spain, said consultant Kellner Brown of Pressed Rat Design.

“We were inspired by the copa balon from Spain and when you look at it, it looks like a large bowl on a wine glass stem. it’s like a blend between a goblet and a merlot glass,” Brown said. “And that’s how they serve their gin and tonics.”

The drink menu has something for everybody. Brown said there is something unique in each drink. For example, they will have dried inclusions that will go in the glass to add to the “olfactory experience.” Some of those include peppercorns, strawberries and more.

“One of the interesting ingredients is dried seaweed,” Brown said. “So one of the notes in this one drink is kelp and there will be dried seaweed inside the glass.”

Brown said the establishment itself is laid-back, “loungey” and intimate, with candles on the tables. The walls have exposed brick, providing an industrial feel to the atmosphere. And as patrons enjoy their libations, jazz and “1920’s club music” streams through the speakers. The menu also includes cocktails reminiscent of the Jazz Age, Iron John’s Brewing Company beer and other spirits at the bar for people who do not like gin.

“A lot of people who have come in since we opened say that they don’t like gin or that they don’t like gin now because of previous experiences with it,” Brown said. “But we’re here to help people hit the reset button and open up the door to something they had said no to before.”

Juniper is closed Sundays and Mondays and it’s open Tuesday – Thursday from 5 p.m. to 11 p.m., Friday from 5 p.m. to midnight and Saturday from 2 p.m. to midnight.