When the light is green outside Drastic Measures in Shawnee, venture inside for a unique first come, first served cocktail experience. Owner Jay Sanders intentionally left beer and wine off the menu to give cocktails all the attention.
“I have been working in craft cocktails bars for a long time, most notably as the General Manager of SoT and Manifesto while it was open,” says Sanders. “Everywhere I worked was with the eventual goal of opening my own bar. We wanted to bring the experience of this kind of bar out to a small but growing downtown Shawnee, and let people have elevated experiences in their own neighborhood.
“The meaning of the name is how we conduct ourselves and our business—by doing progressive and unique things while always carefully considering our impact on our guests, our neighborhood and our craft. First time guests can expect to be greeted with a red light, green light system for entry—green light knock, red light wait. This doesn’t make us a “speakeasy” but does help with controlling volume and guest experience while keeping our overhead low. Once you get in you’ll find a modern little cocktail lounge with dramatic limestone walls from when the building was built in 1850 contrasted with 90’s hip hop and trip hop blasting on the playlist. The recipes and craft behind the drinks are juxtaposed with casual and friendly service.”
Their drinks are said to have a limited lifetime on their menu, as it changes roughly every eight weeks. Some of their current favorites include the Measured Approach, which is their house old fashion made with bourbon, aged rum, grilled apple tincture, decanter bitters and demerara sugar, as well as the Kill Bill, a fruit forward wakeup call full of refreshing spices, including tequila, pineapple, ginger, Thai chile, lemon and salt.
“My personal favorite, at least on this menu, is probably the Warmer Weather, which is a Mezcal and aquavit cocktail with acidified watermelon, dark chiles and lime juice.”
Future plans for a new kind of bar are in the works next to their current location.
"We are very happy with where we are but there are definitely plans in place to open another bar soon. If all goes as planned, that will be a wine bar with low to no ABV cocktails adjacent to Drastic Measures.”
Drastic Measures is located at 5817 Nieman Road in Shawnee. For more information, visit drasticbar.com or follow them on Instagram @drasticmeasures.kc.
Article by Alison Swan
Photography by Janie Jones
Originally published in Johnson County City Lifestyle