Mockingbird Hill is mentioned in a song by the Clash, “Spanish Bombs.” Informed by “punk rock aesthetic,” Brown’s 1,110-square-foot watering hole near the Howard Theater will have room for 40 grazers. A cook has yet to be named. Although the menu won’t go much beyond what’s being billed -- plus olives and a few small bites -- Brown intends to add “a kitchen professional” to his team.
“I’m a long-time lover of sherry,” says Brown, who hosted a dinner featuring the fortified wine, produced from grapes from Andalusia, when he worked at Komi in Dupont Circle. Mockingbird Hill will pour more than 50 varieties.
While the hams will include Serrano and Iberico from Spain, Brown and his co-owner in the project, former Madrid resident Angie Salame, plan to serve meat from local purveyors, too. In preparation for work behind his next counter, Brown has spent a year learning to carve pork. Done well, slicing meat from a pig is not unlike playing the violin, says Brown. Masters slice down and back and forth in swift, graceful moves. “I’m still learning.”
Mockingbird Hill is the third bar from Brown, a member of the board of directors for the Museum of the American Cocktail. Together with his brother Tom, he operates the Passenger and the serene, Japanese-inspired Columbia Room within it.