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New to the Mass Ave corridor is a vodka-meets-video concept that fills a gap in the city's bar scene. Tini (717 N. Massachusetts Ave., 317-384-1313) opened on Dec. 13 to much buzz from those who can't get over the idea that "Video Killed the Radio Star," which is, not coincidentally, the first music video that owner Brad Kime played. The visuals are colorful and lively, of course, and the rest of the room complements those video clips, which skew evenly across classic and current. You’ll get both your Bruce Springsteen and your Beyonce here.
The libations come quickly and dutifully from the staff, all in their 20s and early 30s and dressed in smart black tops and denim. Among the elixirs are a take on the classic Manhattan, all white whiskey with a dash of sweet vermouth, and more intriguing drinks such as the Purple Raintini—Absolut acai berry vodka, violet liqueur, limoncello, lime juice, and muddled blueberries, with a lemon peel to top it off. The cocktails become more busy from there. Consider the Tini Collins, a concoction of Effen cucumber vodka, St. Germain (made from elderflower blossoms), and lemon juice, and adorned with both an orange slice and a cherry, not to mention the submerged cucumber sliver.
Downstairs are two unisex “water closets” and a common washroom with dual sinks. The main room is slender and spare, with a sleek, red bar countertop and absolutely no wall hangings. (Kime plans to soon add a glass wall just inside the front door to fashion an entryway for his martini-drenched lovechild.) Tini seems on par with video bars like Sidetrack in Chicago or Industry in New York City. Come January, Tini will add 10 small plates prepared in the kitchen of Recess. Also in the works in the new year are themed nights with videos centering on the likes of Madonna, one-hit wonders, and '80s tunes.
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