10.25.17 / New York / New York

Major Food Group Opens Their Most Opulent Cocktail Bar Yet, The Pool Lounge

Completing their impressive food & beverage revamp in the Seagram Building

The Pool Lounge Bar

The biggest restaurant news in New York came when Major Food Group, known for skyrocketing from small Nolita eateries Parm and Torrisi to major restaurants like Carbone and Dirty French, were tasked with reinvigorating the famous Four Seasons Restaurant. THE POOL, as it’s now known, opened with much fanfare and hasn’t missed a step; it’s the place to dine in New York right now. But they didn’t stop there. After their success with the intimate (i.e hard to get a table) ZZ’s Clam Bar, which became grounds for their most ambitious cocktail program, they’ve opened their second cocktail bar The Pool Lounge. Overlooking the famous restaurant and its crown jewel, an Alexander Calder mobile hanging over the ‘pool’ in the center of the room, The Pool Lounge has the mark of Major Food Group’s most creative and culinary leanings in their most refined location yet.

[Thomas Waugh]

With a menu designed by renowned bartender Thomas Waugh (formerly of New York institution Death & Co.), guests are treated to a unique menu all based off of a single flavor. Rather than put out a menu filled with hard-to-remember names for mild variations of classics, Waugh approached each drink with a dominant flavor in mind, and titled each one as such. The ‘Sour Apple’ blends cold-pressed Granny Smith apple juice and calvados with rye and a garnish of thai basil, for a result unlike anything remotely similar to an apple martini. The ‘Orange’ adds crushed sweet clementine oranges and mandarin orange liqueur to the gin-based cocktail. And the drinks showcase their culinary inspirations, using produce like a whole jalapeno, cherry tomatoes, and a baby banana as garnishes on their respective drinks. The absinthe cocktail ‘Cucumber’ is even served in a couple glass ringed with micro-planed baby cucumber slices, which is a visual delight.


Everything else about the room is as grand as you would expect from the Seagram Building. Every detail was considered, and the most luxurious materials were used to create a modern and stylish space: custom blue textiles throughout, a mother-of-pearl bar, onyx and nickel tables. Though it might feel a little intimidating walking through the restaurant with NYC big-wigs dispersed throughout, The Pool Lounge feels different. It’s in line with the type of cocktail establishments people have grown accustomed to: incredibly detailed, beautiful decor, and cocktails that are adventurous enough to take any pretense out of the room.

When Major Food Group was put in charge of the revamp, it was easily their biggest and most opulent undertaking yet. The opening of the Pool Lounge not only signals the most accessible new part of the operation, but also the group’s ability to bring their creativity to the most elegant of settings.

The Pool Lounge, 99 E 52nd St. open Mon-Sat, 5pm-midnight



The Pool Lounge

The Pool Lounge Stairs