Great Bars 2013: Ambar

Try something new at this two-level Barracks Row storefront
where modern accents are juxtaposed with rustic wood walls that recall
corn-storage barns—called ambar—that dot the Serbian countryside.
The staff mixes riffs on classic cocktails that make great use of
rakia, fruit brandies that are household staples in the Balkans.
Complementing hearty small plates such as Parmesan-crusted sirloin and
slow-cooked veal shank are new-to-us wines including Tamjanika, a fruity
white grown in several southeastern European countries. Insider tip:
Having trouble choosing a cocktail? We love the Sofia, a Negroni variation
with apricot brandy, Campari, and sweet vermouth. Open daily.