FEZ Restaurant & Bar feels right at home since its move from midtown early last year to 105 West Portland, adjacent to the Roosevelt light rail station. The brand new furniture, updated lighting, modern kitchen equipment, and expanded patio space, are a perfect complement to FEZ’s vibrant atmosphere and trendy Mediterranean fare. Its most impactful change, nonetheless, has been the unique chandelier prominently featured above the bar.
There is something different about it. You might not see it at first, but upon second glance, it hits you. Underneath its seemingly straight-forward mid-century design is a carefully veiled tribute to the bar itself – hidden in plain sight. Its creator, local artist Rocco Menaguale, actually designed each individual element of the chandelier to mimic every item of glassware FEZ uses at its bar.
The chandelier, Rocco aptly named “Bottoms Up,” features over 150 special acrylic panels in the shape of shakers, martinis, highballs, wine glasses, and more, that have each been “mirrored” horizontally, or from the bottom up. Each sheet hangs individually from a metal mesh grid in the ceiling and altogether form a cone shape – emulating a martini glass.
“I wanted something that worked, and was conceptual,” Rocco said. “FEZ is a fun, easy space, and it needed a lively piece that could stand on its own. This was it.”
“Bottoms Up” took over 10 hours to install, and reigns supreme as the most arresting and dynamic work-of-art at FEZ.
No doubt the bartenders there will “keep your glass full until morning light” this holiday season as you enjoy the shimmering display, just be sure and swing responsibly.
What: “Bottoms Up” at FEZ
Where: 105 W. Portland. Next to the Roosevelt light rail station.
Hours: 11:00 AM to midnight every night (Fri. and Sat. until 1 AM)
Parking: 70 free parking spots in the garage and street spots on Portland Ave.
Photos courtesy Rocco Menaguale, Rocco Designs