Lotti Dotti will open in the former Brooklyn Athletic Club space in April.
Pax Americana was started by a dream team — Shepard Ross and chef Adam Dorris.
There’s rhyme in the name of Montrose’s sprawling new patio bar, and there’s a solid reason behind it, too.
Lotti Dotti, the expansive new patio bar taking over the old Brooklyn Athletic Club space, was named for a key ‘90s hip hop song — Slick Rick & Doug E.’s “La Di Da Di,”or Snoop Dogg’s “Lodi Dodi,” It was just begging for yet another spelling.
“Somebody threw that name out there and we just liked it. As we started working on the design and logo and everything, it just made sense,” owner Adam Dorris, formerly of Presidio, Revival Market and Pax Americana, tells PaperCity. “We love it.”
You can expect a curated list of cocktails in three different formats, beer, carefully sourced wine, seasonal light bites and extensive programming to make the most of the fresh air when it opens in April. And there’s more on the horizon — elevated steak nights with veggies cooked over an open flame, wine dinners and brunch.
Dorris is a long time fan of Montrose, the neighborhood where he first really got to know the Bayou City when he moved here 12 years ago. And he’s got memories of this Brooklyn Athletic Club space when it was just a small deck, way back when.
“The space really needed an overhaul, needed a chance to be a viable player in the area,” Dorris says.
“The area right now seems like it’s thirsty for a place to hang out on the patio and have cocktails and drinks. And I’m really excited to be doing the charcuterie program again. I ran very successful programs at Stella Sola and Revival Market, and I’m excited to get back to that.”
He’s revamping the outdoor space, designing an open-air double-bar haven for cocktails, frozen drinks, beer and natural, organic and biodynamic wine.
Dorris envisions an all-purpose spot, whether you want one of the 10 cocktails on draft or one of the eight frozens. Or even if you want more than one cocktail — those can come in single glasses, carafes, which serve three to four, or punch buckets which might be enough to satisfy a group of eight.
General Manager Michael Riojas, formerly of Ladybird’s, Beavers and Presidio, is crafting cocktails inspired by Houston, his hometown. Expect the frozen “Slime in the Ice Machine,” in honor of legendary newscaster Marvin Zindler, with tequila, matcham makrut lime and cachaca.
Dorris also took pains with the wine list, which he’s been crafting over the past several months. Lotti Dotti will boast a 20-label by the glass program.
“It’s all super fun, interesting producers,” Dorris says. “It’s just like I source my food. I like to work with people who have a story to tell, who are thoughtful in what they do.”
“I don’t want to serve wine that goes through any sort of processing that could contaminate that. And it’s very drinkable, a bit lighter, not so full-bodied.”
Lotti Dotti’s Double Bar Power
Drinkers will not be best served at one Lotti Dotti bar over the other. You can find all the drink options at each one, and enjoy two distinct patios. One patio’s in the back with a generous, shady awning and another, climate-controlled one is up in the front. This one can sit up to 30 people.
Dorris says you won’t have to wait long at either bar either. It’s not that kind of cocktail bar.
“We’re built for speed. We can crank out drinks. Get your friends, and get 10 drinks within five minutes,” Dorris says.
The drinks will be served alongside a short, concentrated but robust list of seasonal light bites — five bar snacks, five plates and a curated selection of salumi and charcuterie, plus cheese courtesy of the Houston Dairymaids.
For charcuterie, Dorris is starting off with Italy-sourced meats, and then as the program is developed he’ll switch over to exclusively house-made items — 15 salamis, whole mussels, coppa, loma.
“We’ll have some cooked items, like a smoked fish dip, things like that,” he says.
“As a chef, I want to work with a lot of local farmers. I get bored really quickly and want to change things with the season. I won’t be so hyper-seasonal as I’ve been at Pax and Presidio. But it’ll change at least five times a year.”
And through it all, he’ll spice things up with extensive programming.
“The space is ripe to have events,” Dorris says. “We do have a stage. One of our buddies works with a local funk band and brass band. We’re gonna have a kind of open mic jam night, going to have local improv groups do their stuff here.”
Lotti Dotti, they like to party.