Shortlist symbol Add to shortlist button.

The Hedonist Project: 51st State Sponsored by Wild Turkey


The Hedonist Project are ripping up the rulebook yet again with another smoking hot concept, and this joint promises to be a real dive…

51st State debuts on Friday 3rd March, bringing a welcome slice of good old Kentucky dive bar culture to Leeds, and with it comes a partnership made in sweet bourbon heaven.

Founders Bruce and Dan have teamed up with Matt Landan from legendary Louisville whiskey bar, The Haymarket, to create a friendly, neighbourhood watering hole where the focus is on you, the customer.

Twin town - 3 Different Single barrels , 1. Spirit of Kentucky – Wild Turkey 2. Russell Reserve 3. OKI Whisky. Out goes The Ski Lodge, which currently occupies the Lower Briggate residence, and in comes a more stripped-back space which can hold around 55 covers. Only the bar itself will remain, newly-stocked with 7 different Wild Turkey bourbon including three different barrels which include Spirit Of Kentucky, Russell Reserve and OKI Whisky. These barrels are exclusive to 51st State and The Haymarket along with some secret whiskies for people in the know.

Local historians may recall Leeds has had a close relationship with Louisville since the 1980’s, which was cemented in 2006 when the towns were officially twinned. This new venture allows the legacy to continue, and will see three of the best Haymarket bar tenders flown to Leeds to shake things up US style at 51st State.

Expect a place where you can hang out with friends to the sounds of Springsteen and Little Richard, and enjoy table service rather than wasting precious time queueing for drinks. Service is everything in US bar culture, where a happy customer is one that is never without a drink in hand, and you can expect this same, elevated service offering here in Leeds.

A small, yet perfectly formed US bar snack menu will also be available, including such delights as bacon in maple syrup.


Mothers Medicine

The cocktail menu itself will be as eclectic as the bar, with new twists on modern concoctions to keep you coming back for more. The ‘Mother’s Medicine’ is the perfect post-work tonic to chase away the blues, and features Wild Turkey Honey Bourbon, lemon juice, manuka honey and ginger and thyme syrup, served in a brown medicine bottle with a side of flavoured jelly.

This show-stopping tipple was inspired by Jimmy Russell, often referred to as as ‘The Master Distillers, Master Distiller.’ Russell is the longest tenured-active master distiller in the world, and was inspired to create Wild Turkey Honey by his mother’s bourbon, hot toddy recipe which she used to dish out as medicine.

As the official brand partner at 51st State, Wild Turkey Whiskey will be the main ingredient in several more cutting-edge cocktail creations served in the bar.


Patriot Punch

The ‘Patriot Punch’ will be served from an orange water cooler, with the ingredients switching on a weekly basis throughout the bars spring residency. And, for those with a somewhat softer pallet, a White Dog Bourbon infused with fruit to lower the ABV will be on offer, providing a lighter alternative to straight up bourbon.

A selection of fine lagers, ales and wines will also be on offer, and all the bartenders will be decked out in clothing from Denham, who have also joined forces with The Hedonist Project boys.


Founder Dan has this to say about the concept:

"So, after spending time over in the US with our partners, The Haymarket, and especially owner Matthew Landan, we wanted to create a drinks menu that celebrates the best of Leeds and Louisville. Louisville with its love, passion and knowledge of bourbon and Leeds with its history of innovation and creativity. Yes, the drinks we are creating are going to be great tasting, but also with our change of service style we want to create a unique, drinking experience.’’


51st State opens on Friday 3rd March, allowing you to get your bourbon kicks for three months, before it disappears to make way for the next exciting chapter in the Hedonist Project storybook.


51st State - Strawberry Julip