BY KAREN GERHARDINGER | MIRROR REPORTER — The chandelier lights reflecting off the porcelain tile, the light music and the smell of vegetarian crabcakes, miso chicken and grilled sourdough set the ambience inside Farnsworth Cocktail Bar – the long-awaited Waterville eatery located in the former State Savings Bank.
On January 13, the Farnsworth Cocktail Bar opened for the first of several private parties in a lead-in to a public opening in the next week, and owner Josh Wagy couldn’t be more excited.
“We got the keys right before the COVID lockdowns,” said Wagy, a Monclova Township resident who previously operated Kengo Sushi and Yakitori with Kengo Kato.
After a year of getting plans together, the project to transform the 1924 building ran into snags with a one-year wait on an HVAC unit. Last week, however, the delays and frustrations came to an end as the bar passed inspection, obtained a liquor license and opened the doors. The hanging of just a few more pieces of artwork, the installation of a church pew as a corner bench and the hiring of a few more front-end servers will be wrapped up soon, Wagy said.
Josh Stormer, a 2001 Anthony Wayne graduate who found a love of cooking while studying diplomacy and global politics at Miami University, returned to the area from Seattle, where he was working as an oyster chef before the pandemic.
“I’m glad to be able to come back home and do what I love,” Stormer said, as he prepared a menu of appetizers that also included pickled vegetables, oven oysters, shrimp cocktail and steak and sourdough for the private party.
The menu for the bar remains top secret, Wagy said, but count on a variety of fresh oysters, seasonal seafood, sandwiches and salads along with classic cocktails.
“This will be fun and casual, but the food will exceed everyone’s expectations,” Wagy said.
Located at 219 Farnsworth Rd., the bar will be open from 5:00 to 10:00 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, and available for private parties on Sundays and Mondays.
For information, visit www.farnsworthcocktails.com.