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  • Writer's pictureDiana Brandt

The Clever Koi Team Is Expanding 'Across The Pond'

Born & Raised Hospitality, the Valley-based restaurateurs behind Clever Koiand the upcoming Fellow Osteria, are proud to announce an all-new concept splashing down in Central Phoenix in early fall. Named Across The Pond(4236 N. Central Ave #101), this intimate craft cocktail bar is taking over the old Central Wine space just across the walkway from the Clever Koi's Phoenix location. Now under construction, Across The Pond (ATP) will feature a compact, ever-changing menu of 10 different custom cocktails, plus an extensive selection of Japanese whisky, craft beers and wines, all paired with the Valley's freshest sushi and bar bites served off the Clever Koi menu next door.

Housed inside a stylishly redesigned space best described as 'tropical meets mid-century modern,' Across The Pond is the latest culinary creation from Born & Raised co-owners, Nicholas Campisano (2017 Arizona Restaurant Association Manager of the Year) and Joshua James (winner of the 2018 Arizona Cocktail Weekend's Last Slinger Standing bartending competition).

"We've been looking to add a cocktail bar to the B&R portfolio for a while now, and had been looking all over the Melrose district," James says, "But we always kept an eye on the Central Wine space. So when the previous tenant's lease came up, it worked out great for both parties." As for the name, James emphasizes Across The Pond is not a British-style pub, but a casual cocktail bar with Asian accents. "'The Pond' was always our nickname for Clever Koi on Central, so it was obvious to name it, Across The Pond."

Open Wednesday through Saturday from 4 pm to midnight, this 35-seat space tempts with a minimalist décor, highlighted by both dark and warm woods, and colorful tropical wallpaper behind the bar. Specializing in traditional Japanese sushi, i.e. no Americanized rolls, Across The Pond will serve up an omakase (or chef's choice) menu of nigiri, sashimiand maki(or hand rolls) dishes. Delivered daily by Chula Seafood, ATP will offer three different varieties of fresh fish, paired with top-quality rice, vinegar, soy and wasabi-no deep fried krab or spicy mayo needed. Plus, guests can order a variety of steamed buns and dumplings from Clever Koi, with weekend specials such oysters on the half shell coming down the road.

Wash it all down with Joshua James' handcrafted selection of craft cocktails, including a variety of imported Japanese whisky served in the traditional highball style, with the soda water artfully poured down a spoon. Perfect for a quick bite before dinner at Clever Koi, or as a standalone dinner & drink destination, Across The Pond is sure to be Phoenix's favorite new watering hole.

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