A new bar touting fun drinks and vibes is coming to downtown Austin this summer. Saturn is opening at 906 Congress Avenue starting on Saturday, July 15 at 6 p.m.
The forthcoming bar will be all about what owner/bar person Steven Smith, who has been working at bars as a bartender or manager for most of his career, describes to Eater as “disco cocktails,” which, to him, are “playful, extremely neon-colored club drinks” from the 1970s into the 1990s. That means “day-glo fun flavors [in] thoughtful cocktails that don’t drink like a ‘mixologist’ made them — they drink like you’re having a fun party.” He points to Saturn’s Mommy & Daddy Time cocktail, his version of a Pornstar martini made with guava accompanied by a side pour of sparkling wine.
Smith started the bar as a pop-up in September 2021, with events at Whisler’s, Nickel City, and Little Brother. Saturn is Smith’s way of combating what he sees as too many “big-box nightclub-style places” in the cities, as he tells Eater. He specifically wanted to open in downtown because he felt like the area “is ripe for new nightlife, entertainment, and drinking spots.”
Smith moved to Austin from Nashville three years ago during the pandemic. In Nashville, he worked at bars like L.A. Jackson at the Thompson Hotel as the manager and at Flamingo Cocktail Club as a bartender. In Austin, he worked at Whisler’s.
Helping Smith out are his business partners, including Shaun Folad, who is the owner of several Nashville bars including Lucky’s 3-Star and Goodtime.
Saturn’s first day will operate with limited service to test out the space. Its full hours will be from 4 p.m. to 2 a.m. Tuesday through Sunday.
Update, July 12, 10:33 a.m.: This article, originally published on May 10, has been updated to include Saturn’s opening date and service hours.