Mandy Dish

“Bar Rescue” Star Lisamarie Joyce Reimagines the Beverage Experience at Babalu Tapas & Tacos

Mandy Dish
“Bar Rescue” Star Lisamarie Joyce Reimagines the Beverage Experience at Babalu Tapas & Tacos

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Morgan Lanier or Olivia Mayes

Melissa Libby & Associates


“Bar Rescue” Star Lisamarie Joyce Reimagines The Beverage Experience at Babalu Tapas & Tacos

New Handcrafted, Spirits-Forward Drink Program Emphasizes Freshness, Fun and Summertime Simplicity

ATLANTA (June 1, 2018) – When Abe Ruiz, CEO of Babalu Tapas & Tacos, and his team set out to reimagine the beverage menu for their nine popular locations across the South, they knew that they needed an expert. “It was not just about writing up a menu (I could have done that!), it was about creating a beverage experience. We had a solid drink program, we just needed to create the sensory experience with enhanced new bar recipes,” Ruiz stated.  So, Ruiz reached out to a beloved service industry veteran, Lisamarie Joyce, one of the stars of the hit reality series ‘Bar Rescue’. “Lisamarie is one of the most passionate training people I have ever met, this was an easy choice,” said Ruiz.

Just in time for summer, Joyce has created a delicious batch of handcrafted, spirits-forward cocktails brimming with fresh-pressed juices and other aromatic ingredients. The new enhanced cocktail experience is now awaiting Atlanta guests at the Babalu Tapas & Tacos at 33 Peachtree Place in the heart of Midtown.

“The goal was to create a beverage experience that would complement Babalu’s already amazing food,” says Joyce. “The emphasis is on simplicity and freshness. Working with Michelle Laverty, the head bartender at Babalu’s Memphis Overton location, we made sure to infuse a sense of fun into everything we did.”

New customer favorites on the reimagined beverage menu include the following:

Straw-Vocado: Grey Goose Le Citron Vodka, fresh avocado and strawberries with a splash of fresh-squeezed sour.

Says Joyce: “This is one of Michelle’s originals; perfection in a glass.”

Cuban Cigar: Bacardi 8-Year Gran Reserva Rum, fresh orange juice, Havana & Hyde Bitters and a dash of smoked bitters.

Says Joyce: “Sometimes, a cocktail begins with a great name and the perfect reserve rum.”

Baba-Breeze: Bombay Sapphire Gin, fresh cucumber, ginger and mint with just-squeezed lemon juice and a splash of soda.

Says Joyce: “This is a refreshing summer garden in a glass.”

Bacardi Cuatro Daiquiri: a classic daiquiri made from four-year aged rum, freshly squeezed lime juice and sugar shaken with cracked ice, taking its name from the mining town on the southeastern tip of Cuba where the daiquiri was first invented.

Says Joyce: “The aged rum and the fresh ingredients make this the perfect, classic daiquiri.”

Mango Coco-Jito, made with Bacardi Coconut Rum, fresh mango, mint, freshly squeezed lime juice and a splash of soda.

Says Joyce: “If you want the crispness and cleanness of a classic mojito but a little more tropical, fun and lady-driven, this is your new summer favorite!”

Babalu’s new beverage experience also offers a menu of “Mockteles” for business folks who want a fresh delicious drink at lunch minus the booze. Choices include the following:

  • Paloma Paradise with freshly squeezed grapefruit juice, mint, agave and soda.
  • Berry Lemonade with blackberries and raspberries, freshly squeezed sour and a splash of Sprite.
  • Cucumber Crisp with fresh cucumber and ginger, freshly squeezed lemon juice and a splash of soda.
  • Tropical Soda with fresh pineapple and mango, just-squeezed sour and a splash of soda.

After developing the new beverage experience for Babalu Tapas & Tacos as part of her consulting business, Joyce is now traveling across the South — including Atlanta — to teach and train each restaurant’s bar staff on how to make the delicious libations. “With 15 years of experience myself behind the bar, meeting and working beside the bartenders is my favorite part of this job,” says Joyce. “The key to success is always just hanging out, meeting the staff and studying what people already love about Babalu, from the tableside guacamole to the tapas and taco menu favorites.”

In Atlanta, Babalu Tapas & Tacos is located at 33 Peachtree Place in Midtown. For more information, call 404-900-9595 or visit

About Babalu

Babalu Tapas & Tacos is a fun, one-of-a-kind, sharing-style dining experience. Founded in 2010, in Jackson, Mississippi, the restaurant has quickly taken the Southeast by storm. The Latin-inspired dishes -- each with a unique Southern flair -- are sure to bring people together. Babalu is proud to use hyper-local produce and products for its made-from-scratch dishes and handcrafted cocktails. Babalu is a wholly owned subsidiary of Eat Here Brands. For more information, visit Follow Babalu on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter for additional updates.