The local craft cocktails scene is about to get some stiff competition from a New York bartender with her eye on East Austin. Kathryn Weatherup, who owns Weather Up bars in Tribeca and Prospect Heights, will open a third branch in her chain of bars-slash-restaurants in East Austin after SXSW with a specialty ice program and full kitchen. And cred? Yes, she has it in spades, complete with a New York Times profile that calls her the "anti-banter bartender," gushing: "She lavishes attention on her cocktails, which she approaches with the punctiliousness of a lab technician and the purity of a nun."
Weatherup tells Eater Austin that Chef Kristine Kittrell of El Chile fame will be "overseeing" the Austin Weather Up menu, which will feature a "pretty serious happy hour with $1 oysters, etc."
Weatherup tells us she's looking forward to Austin's plentiful real estate and will be moving into the old Azul space on East Cesar Chavez. "East Austin is a pretty amazing hood that seemed so full of potential and we have land," she says, which is "something that is just a dream in NYC." She and partner Richie Boccato have been "working with block ice for years," and decided to buy a Clinebell ice machine. It'll be the focal point of the bar's outdoor space, "so people can see the ice production and harvesting."
Weatherup says they're planning "a few fun things for SXSW," but will open for good "after that madness is over."
Weather Up's Prospect Heights location. [Photo: The Jedi Foodie E./Yelp]