New cocktail bar opening Friday in downtown Wilmington hopes to shake up the bar scene.


Ivan “Chip” Moore, Joseph Sena and his wife Abigail are opening their latest bar concept in downtown Wilmington. The Underfront Bar is in the old dead crow comedy space, the trio has created and sold many other successful restaurant and bar concepts in Wilmington such as Rumcow, and Whiskey Tango Fox Trot.

Opening Friday February 3rd, the Underfront Bar will boast 37 intricate cocktails. These cocktails will utilize methodologies a cut above the norm. Think smoking, fat washing, atomizing, and dehydration. These methods aren’t new to the cocktail scene, but they do make flavors and textures come alive.

For those unfamiliar with these methods here’s a brief guide to what you can expect.


Smoking can layer flavors onto a cocktail and can ignite all the senses. There are many ways bartenders can smoke cocktails. Not only does smoking a cocktail just look cool it can help smooth some of the ingredients which makes them blend better.

Fat Washing

The idea of fat washing is to flavor alcohol by adding melted fats such bacon fat, butter, coconut oil, and duck fat. Although it may initially seem disgusting, the process gives the drink a deeper texture and a silky mouthfeel rather than a strong flavor.


This involves a device specifically designed to spritz a liquid onto a drink. They were originally created to pour tiny amounts of vermouth into martinis, but now have many more uses. Bartenders can coat glasses with atomizers for extra flavor or scent along with adding just a tiny amount of liquid onto a cocktail to change the flavor of the nose of the drink.


This has to do with garnishing cocktails. Anything that has water removed usually makes the remaining substances stronger. The same is true of garnishes. By dehydrating a garnish, you make the smell stronger. They are not only for aesthetics, but they also reduce waste especially with citrus.

Underfront also makes everything for their cocktails in house from scratch like their bitters, tinctures, and syrups. By doing so they think about every aspect of the cocktail and can provide a premium drink that you won’t be able to replicate anywhere else.

Not much of a cocktail drinker? That’s alright. Underfront also will have 27 local beers with 12 on tap in addition to 15 wines by the glass and 10 reserve wines. There is truly something for everyone at Joseph Sena’s new bar.

In Summer a large tiki bar will grace the 500 square foot back patio and they will offer blended daiquiris to keep you cool along with tiki drinks.

There’s room for 100 guests at Underfront and they can mingle along the century old brick and beam construction. The bar mixes art deco and modern touches, with hand selected fixtures, and furniture.

Kolby Bass

Kolby Bass

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