A New York slice from Goodfellas Pizzeria will have you searching for a drink fit for a mob boss. Luckily for you, there’s a speakeasy bar located within its confines. Goodfellas has multiple regional locations, including one in the heart of Covington, Kentucky’s historic Mainstrasse Village.
Scott Sargent, bar manager of Wiseguy’s Covington location, says Goodfellas has been a staple in its respective communities––spanning four states and 10 pizzerias––for 17 years. Seven of those locations include a Wiseguy Lounge, and Covington houses the company’s first faux speakeasy bar.
The Northern Kentucky and Cincinnati region has three locations. Along with the Mainstrasse location, customers can slide in for a slice of pizza and a cocktail at locations in Cincinnati’s Over-the-Rhine and Pleasant Ridge neighborhoods.
“The bourbon community has become more and more educated as the market and individual knowledge bases have expanded, and this has allowed us to become well-known hubs to gather, relax and learn about all things bourbon,” says Sargent. “We dedicate ourselves to being the most knowledgeable folks around when it comes to America’s native spirit.”
Enter Goodfellas’ Mainstrasse hub and you’ll first be greeted by their pizza counter and walls covered in pictures from famous mafia movies and shows, from The Sopranos to The Godfather. If you’re in the mood for ‘za, you can choose a slice from any of their daily offerings or order your own full-size specialty.
Sargent says they love talking to everyone who walks into the lounge, whether they’re a bourbon beginner or aficionado. Wiseguy Lounge houses over 800 whiskeys and over 20 private barrel selections from both more-recognized distilleries and local distilleries just hitting the market. Head to the back of the room and climb the staircase to enter the Wiseguy Lounge, a cozy low-lit space with leather sofas, dark woods and cocktails.
The lounge has received several accolades, including being ranked at 70 among the “Top 101 Whiskey Bars” by Whiskey Advocate and being named among the top 20 speakeasies in America by World Magazine as well as one of “The Best Bourbon Bars in America” according to The Bourbon Review. Sargent recently won first place in the Cincinnati Alchemy Fest––a competition, art and music festival––crowning him the “King of Cocktails.”
One of their bartenders, Chase Heltzel, also recently became one of the first certified “Masters of Bourbon.” Also on their staff is a master mixologist and, if wine is your thing, a sommelier. Sargent says their bartenders have more accolades and accreditation than anywhere else in the Northern Kentucky and Cincinnati region. Along with classic and seasonal offerings, Wiseguy’s Signature cocktails include the Sun-Kissed Sweetheart; Broken Hatchet; Wooden Nickel; Mexican Shakedown; Dirty Smash; and Unspoken.
“The bourbon community in Northern Kentucky is especially profound given that we are the gateway from the north into bourbon country,” says Sargent. “With a variety of establishments on and off The B-Line®, we make sure that everyone entering Kentucky is greeted with a truly unique glimpse into bourbon, as well as offering an exceptional selection of whiskeys that are difficult to find elsewhere.”
If you have enjoyed getting to know Wiseguy Lounge, be sure to check out our behind the scenes look at other stops here on The B-Line.