Herzog — Munich, Germany
Maximilian Gradl and his partners originally intended to open a champagne bar, but after a survey of the light-filled L-shaped space in a postmodernist pile built in the late 1950s by Sepp Ruf and Theo Pabst, the Zurich-based architects Build_Inc had more ambitious ideas.
The result is a sexy bar, lounge and restaurant that combines contemporary lines with an unabashed vintage vibe that’s completely in keeping with the building’s architectural heritage. The terrazzo floor is inlaid with strips of brass that demarcate the separate spaces. Dark grey drapes and furnishings, and deep black walls and pillars provide a dramatic contrast, while thin veins of brass strips break away to create geometric edges along the window panes, sofa arm rests, and table corners.
The bar menu is equally beguiling. The Paper Wave – a heady cocktail of spiced rum, Irish whiskey, sherry, burnt orange slices, and caramelized pineapple – sets the scene for a dinner of artichoke ravioli and red chard, and pancetta-inflected potato bread.