Chandeliers in bird cages, David Bowie in the bathroom; Present Company takes the experiential factor and packs it tight. Open a little over a month now, the Royal Oak re-wash, is definitely the favorite child in the Houston bar scene right now. Beverage director Rex Nielsen puts the transition simply, "it's like Royal Oak went to Palm Springs, took mushrooms, had a good time, and then found it's way back home." Pretty much, yes.
Upon passing Go with the doorman, colorful twists on cocktails and aesthetic design instantly uplift the spirits. Combined with a bangin' playlist, and surrounded with good mates, it's impossible to dwell on that cryptic email your boss sent you at 4:59 p.m.
Bartender Rikki Feezor helps bring the energy with her infectious, 'let's just have fun,' attitude. Behind the bar for three years now, Feezor comes to Present Company with a background in craft cocktails, having worked at the Galleria location of McCormick & Schmick's. From buzzy happy hours to one-on-one guest interactions, and perhaps the energy emitted to pull it all off, Feezor was instantly attracted to working in the bar.
A smooth transition from formal to fun, she's found a tight-knit group of friends in co-workers at Present Company. "I love the vibe here, all the time, everyone's happy, shots here, shots there, from beginning to end. You literally can't be in a bad mood."
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It's easy to see that Feezor's enthusiasm only reinforces the good feels felt by all. Outside of work, she studies law at the University of Houston, aiming to practice in petroleum. Biking, kayaking, anything outdoors has her exploring all parts of Houston on the many trails throughout.
"Principal Kisses Alligator"
2 ounces New Amsterdam Gin
1 ounce Lime juice
1/2 ounce Agave
Blackberry Cucumber LaCroix
Shake ingredients with ice and double strain into a LaCroix can filled with ice. Top with Blackberry Cucumber LaCroix. It's delicious. You're going to want more.
To give you an idea of how popular these LaCroix cocktails are; Present Company sold 800 of the Stranger Danger and 600 of the Principal Kisses Alligator last Friday. Sheesh.
Shot of Advice: Have fun whatever you're doing, all the time. It's never that serious, let stress roll off your back... and bartenders hear everything.
(It's true, we do.)