On Tonight: Beimir – Cocktail Bar
Beimir Bistu Shein
Ottakring’s new mixologist joint Beimir has filled a cocktail void
When I moved west of Wattgasse, to the outer reaches of the down-to-earth 16th district, I hoped for many things – lower housing prices, a sort of gritty authenticity and proximity to the greenery of my beloved Vienna Woods.
What I didn’t expect is to find my local bar packed full on a Tuesday night, avant-garde electronic music and a chicly dressed barman serving exotic cocktails featuring fashionable Bulleit bourbon with a syrup derived from tonka beans and Nutella.
When you walk into Beimir, on the corner of the Speckbachgasse and Seeböckgasse, your attention is immediately drawn to the bar. An army of spirit bottles stands in massed ranks, towering over cut glasses and sliced fruit. Barman Tom Legat is working on one of his own creations; mixing and shaking away with a look of almost demonic focus as friends watch fondly from the tall bar stools.
“Tom describes himself as the creative brain behind the drinks,” laughs Matthias Habringer, Beimir’s 31-year old owner, who admits he finds some of Tom’s creations “crazy but fantastic.” One cocktail even uses bacon as a relish. The energy and exuberance is a breath of fresh air in no-nonsense, rough-edged Ottakring. Did Matthias worry the idea would fail in these surroundings? “No,” he says simply. “I gave up worrying years ago.”
His dream was to have “a comfortable, stylish bar where people want to stay a while and would want to come again and again,” says Matthias. “Every district needs that.”
Beimir proves you don’t have to stick to the well-trodden paths to open a new bar.
The concept of Beimir has gradually evolved over the 11 months since the former business student opened up with his savings and a little bit of help from Grandma. “At first I had the cocktail classics and just four creations of my own. I also had milkshakes and more food.” The arrival of 27-year-old Tom Legat last September complemented and perhaps completed the spirit of ebullience brought to the project by Matthias.
Far from the madding crowd
Beimir is cosy; with just three small rooms, you’d be wise to book on weekends to be sure of a table. Even during the week an eclectic crowd gathers inside the low-lit eggshell blue walls. It is not all about the cocktails: Bearded hipsters with flat-caps drink delicious Tegernseer beer out of the bottle; in a corner, a huddle of smartly dressed young women celebrate behind an ice-bucket of chilled prosecco. Around the corner, a middle-aged couple discuss something animatedly, leaning forward on a pair of opposing easy chairs. Two dogs lounge under a chair near the bar, completely nonplussed by Tom’s shaking. Oh, and the whole bar is non-smoking, a major plus in my books,. The future is slowly arriving in Vienna.
It certainly takes a bit of liquid courage to order “Flower Power” – a combination of Pampero rum, passion fruit, lime, chocolate and mint – but your bravery will be rewarded. And if that’s an adventure, then “Golden Boy”, featuring gin infused with Earl Grey tea and mixed with homemade ginger beer is simply delicious.
Beimir has enriched the neighborhood and proves you don’t have to stick to the well-trodden paths to open a new bar. So celebrate this audacity if you live nearby, and if you’ve never ventured west of Wattgasse, maybe its time to make the trip.
16., Speckbachergasse 47
Tue-Thu 18:00-24:00; Fri-Sat 19:00-02:00,