One of the busiest businessmen during the pandemic sets his eye on a new restaurant opening at Fergusons Downtown in late August or early September. Ryan Doherty and his company Corner Bar Management plan to debut Peyote, a desert respite with retro charm serving elevated American dishes, in the former La Monja space.
During the pandemic, Doherty opened the techno beats of Discopussy and the mezcal and tequila retreat Lucky Day Tequila & Mezcal House on Fremont East and LED-lit Oddwood as well as Museum Fiasco with futuristic exhibits at Area15 that joined his staples Commonwealth and Park on Fremont. Peyote partners with Main St. Provisions’s Kim Owens and Justin Kingsley Hall for the kitchen, Jolene Mannina from Secret Burger and neighboring Vegas Test Kitchen to run the front of the house, and Max Solano, most recently head of whisky education and a new brand partnership acquisition analyst for Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits of Nevada, on cocktails.
Doherty describes Peyote as “a little dreamy watering hole on top of being a restaurant. We’re not going to be doing what we normally do,” he says, saying food take precedence over the deejay- and music-driven bars he owns. After the dinner crowds, he says the restaurant converts more of a lounge vibe.
Kingsley Hall plans to split his time between Main St. Provisions and Peyote, where he created a menu of heirloom tomato summer squash tart; mini shrimp toast topped with wild smoked salmon roe; American country ham on toast served with tangy pickled mustard seed, carrot aioli, and wild arugula topped with red eye gravy; and beet tartare.
Savory main dishes include Carolina Gold rice risotto with grilled corn, sunflower seeds, leeks, and almond milk; heritage pig sandwich with grilled pork belly, grass-fed butter, radish, plum mustard, rouge creamery cheese, and red pepper pickles; Santa Maria vintage tri-tip grilled on oak served with grilled baby gem, corn salad, pickles, chili preserved radish, butter ball potatoes, and fry bread designed to feed three to six people; and pink peppercorn buttermilk fried chicken available in four or eight pieces.
Peyote also plans to serve brunch on the weekends with a classic diner breakfast with bacon and two eggs; a spinach and Beehive cheese quiche; a breakfast burrito stuffed with scrambled eggs and chopped tri-tip; eggs Benedict with grilled pork belly or beef tri-tip, French toast made with country bread, and roasted banana French toast. Vegetarian options include a quiche with roasted mushroom medley, caramelized onions, arugula, and herbs and a breakfast burrito with Just Egg, chipotlé carrot & potato hash, spinach, cashew cheese, and fire roasted salsa. A grilled and chilled seafood platter rounds out brunch.
Solano’s cocktail menu includes Tea For Two, a shared beverage with either certified organic vodka or small batch bourbon, OM organic lemon and ginger liqueur, lemon juice, white peach, and cold-brewed organic Earl Grey tea; El Camino, made with Joven mezcal, Alpine Preserve liqueur, passion fruit puree, lime-agave sour, and smoked sea salt; and Hey, Smokey!, a 30-day barrel-aged cocktail made with bourbon, apple brandy, Aperol, Amaro Nonino, and orange and tobacco bitters smoked with a proprietary wood blend and fully blinged.
Doherty named the restaurant Peyote for the desert landscape at Fergusons, where dozens of cactus and succulents pepper the grounds. Doherty added dozens more. “We inherited a landscape full of cactus and then added a few hundred more to complete our Palm Springs-inspired, open-air patio design,” he says. “We really went deep on the California architecture and eclectic desert vibe.”
The peyote cactus also helps explain the 3,400-square-foot interior, jam-packed with artwork. “There has always been an almost mystical air surrounding peyote, and people have been using it for thousands of years to expand their consciousness and test their creative potential. Seemed fitting for this venue,” he says. “Plus, peyote is really hard to find, and you have to go searching for it in distant places — much like our restaurant location.”
Much like his recent bar openings at Lucky Day and Discopussy, Doherty turned to artist Keegan Arthur Olton for a canopy of custom 3D-mapped LED bistro-light canvas to span over the patio with more than 1,500 lights that glimmer to music.
Peyote plans to be open from 6 p.m. to 2 a.m. on Wednesdays and Thursdays, and from noon to 2 a.m. from Fridays through Sundays. Brunch runs from noon to 4 p.m. on Friday through Sunday.