From opening the Florida Room at the Delano (recruited by Lenny Kravitz) and The Regent to being the first American bartender to participate in the Daiquiri King Competition at the El Floridita Bar in Cuba, John Lermayer isn’t just a venerable force behind any bar. He’s a bartender’s bartender.
What sets Sweet Liberty apart? We are an American bartender-driven bar. It’s eclectic. There is not one type of person that hangs out here. You can have a drink next to a drag queen, a Marlins player, and a stripper.
What’s the peak time to visit? We have a solid rosé and oysters happy hour, which usually hangs tight till about midnight, when industry starts rolling in.
Is that why you have a bartender’s table behind the bar? We wanted full transparency. You can see everything: all our shrubs, syrups, mixes, and garnish chart.
How many cocktails are on the menu? We’ve got about 814 labels of spirits, not including vermouth and certified wines. We’re not just about cocktails. We love wine and beer . Plus food… Being an industry bar, [food] was really important.
Where else can you put drops of mezcal in your oysters? I also think we have the best burger.
Did you always want to open your own bar? Every guy wants his own bar since the day he starts drinking, but it was about taking everything I learned on the road and bringing it back.
What’s the craziest thing that has happened at Sweet Liberty? We had drag queens milk wrestling one night. 237-B 20th St., Miami Beach, 305-763-8217