Moses McIntee is out — and pizza is in — at Lucid
By Anna Silman
Less liquid nitrogen, more pizza (Image: Lucid)
Acclaimed mixologist Moses McIntee popped onto the Queen West scene earlier this year as the driving force behind Lucid Cocktail and Kitchen, which billed itself as a prime destination for molecularly-inspired libations. Yet just a few months down the road, we are surprised to learn that a regime change has taken place, with brand new management, a radically pared-down cocktail menu and a new pizza concept. The spot is now named simply Lucid.
McIntee’s replacement, new General Manager Derek Grandpre, explains that the decision for the overhaul was based primarily on economics. (And really, with Barchef just across the street, did Queen West really need another spot for $20 cocktails?)
“We thought the neighbhourhood needed more affordable food and drinks,” Grandpre says. “Something a little more casual.”
The new Lucid specializes predominantly in a menu of gourmet thin-crust pizzas and other Italian fare. While cocktails are still an attraction, the drinks menu has shrunk dramatically from the former 70-plus offerings — as well as being significantly less liquid-nitrogen heavy — which Grandpre says leaves more room for Lucid’s team of bartenders to improvise in line with customers’ needs.
“We’re leaving [the drinks] up to our talented bartenders,” he says, “and that way it’s more of a collaboration with the customers.”
And what of noted bar star McIntee, whose project was so eagerly anticipated by Toronto beverage aficionados?
“I don’t think he thought it was the right fit for him and his team,” Grandpre says.