It’s the 1950s and you’re at a funfair. There’s a claw crane machine on your right, a Tarot reader ahead of you, and an ice cream parlour on your left with a winking ice cream pot on the sign. No, this isn’t the beginning of a very strange joke – it’s what it’ll feel like walking into Hoot the Redeemer, the soon-to-open second venue from Iain McPherson and team, of Panda and Sons in Edinburgh.
‘I felt bartenders and bars have become too embroiled in trying to out-w*nk each other and that they have simply forgotten about their bread and butter, which is the noble customer,’ McPherson told Imbibe. ‘The cocktail boom has been great and needed but we are evolving at such a high pace that the consumers just can't keep up with us and I honestly see a boiling point in a few years’ time.
‘Bartenders need to give the consumers a chance to try and understand a trend rather then it disappearing from their menus in a blink of an eye.’
Hoot the Redeemer will be ‘more interactive and fun’ but will maintain the high quality of Panda & Sons, McPherson said. The bar will also aim to promote young and talented Scottish creative working outside of the drinks industry – for example by working with them on the music and decoration.
Some special features of the bar will include a claw crane dubbed Pinch’n Sip, where customers will be able to pick a flavour then take it to the bar to be used in a cocktail. The bar will also sell its own range of alcoholic ice creams called Señor Scoop via a vending machine, as seen on the picture above.
‘We went back to the beginning on this one to turn simplicity on its head and offer something genuinely innovative without being complicated,’ McPherson added. ‘I truly believe we have something fresh to offer the global bar scene.'
Hoot the Redeemer opens on 24 July at 7 Hanover Square, Edinburgh EH2 2DL.