First Sip at Brick & Mortar

FOR THOSE STILL MOURNING the late B-Side Lounge and Enormous Room, there’s good reason to let the grief go: Their spirits live on in Central Square’s new Brick & Mortar, a joint venture from the bygone bars’ owners. There are complex drinks like the Streets of Gettysburg ($10), a blend of sherry, rye, and Benedictine and Ristretto liqueurs, and refreshing ones like the Gail Collins ($10, right), a mix of mezcal, sloe gin, maraschino, lemon, bitters, and soda. The food is cocktail-friendly, and portions are generous: crostini ($9 for two) come heaped with toppings like tobacco shallots and fried chicken livers, while mini po’ boys ($10 for two) are stuffed with fried oysters and a fresh slaw. Missing from the equation? Pretension. Bartenders are just as happy to hand over $4 Bud Heavys or four-for-$20 shots (a deal cheekily called “Crush on a Stripper”) as they are to mix up a serious cocktail. Given the crowd on a recent Thursday night, it seems that attitude is serving them well.

589 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge.

Photo by Ekaterina Smirnova