A Conversation With Celina's Own Expert Creator of Craft Cocktails

Article by Sharla Davenport

Photography by Melissa Hatcher

Originally published in Celina Lifestyle

When it comes to cocktails, gone are the days of bartenders tossing bottles in the air like Tom Cruise. Instead, Anthony Morel says a good drink comes from Craft Bartending and "is able to hit all senses with one sip. Taste, sight, smell and touch." Craft Bartending is to bartenders as pitmasters are to barbecue; it's all about the skill. 

Celina Lifestyle profiled Anthony Morel recently for his restaurants, The Nook CKMC (Light Farms, Celina) and Graffiti Pasta (Denton). These restaurants are known not only for the food but also for the specialty cocktails. 

In fact, it’s the craft cocktail that resulted in Anthony’s latest Celina project. Located at the Huddleston Building, his newest venture will open early next year. Its focus is the overall taste experience, not just the drink. It will be casual with “date night vibes” where you can “go out with friends but feel like you’re in a nice restaurant.”  This new location (name announcement coming soon) will have a full dinner, lunch and brunch menu.

With over twenty years of experience, Anthony is thrilled to showcase his passion, being a “cocktail chef”. He starts with an interesting ingredient and then builds a cocktail around it, as a chef does with food. 

Anthony got his start at a Dallas craft bar where he gained a true thirst (pun intended) for the cocktail. Soon after, he opened his first bar creating concoctions from ingredients inspired by his travels. Now, Anthony strives to make the flavors balance between taste and presentation, leaving a lasting memory of that drink. A goal embodied by a true craftsman in his art, an artist like Anthony Morel. 

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- Luxardo Bitter Bianco 

- Greenbar Ginger Liqueur

- Cocchi Sweet Vermouth

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- Mezcal Tequila

- Yellow Chartreuse 

- Reposado Tequila

- Rosemary & Strawberry Cordial 

- Honey Thyme Cordial

- Fresh Lime Juice

- Wasabi Oil

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