At Chicago's Nacional 27 Adam Seger takes a chef's approach at the bar and, working closely with Executive Chef/Partner Randy Zweiban, he creates a culinary-mixology fusion, bringing together the bar and the kitchen to take cocktails to a new level. From the roasted West Indian pumpkin puree for a seasonal Calabaza Eggnog to the pineapple-vanilla foam that garnishes the Passion Fruit Screwdriver, Seger stretches the boundaries of cocktail flavor profiles, incorporating new kitchen technologies which have a natural home at the bar.
Unlike most other mixologists, Adam Seger is a Certified Culinary Professional (CCP). It’s no wonder that he has the ingredient obsession of a chef. In addition to using specialty and boutique liquors for his drinks, he also sources artisan products, such as the organic agave syrup from Peru. Seger creates many other syrups and mixes in-house, including Bloody Mary, Sangria, Tres Leches and Horchata. He even makes his own maraschino cherries.
As a bar chef, Seger takes inspiration from his tenure with world-class chefs from the Michelin-rated kitchen of Chez Julien in Strasbourg to Chicago's TRU and Napa Valley's French Laundry. From Chez Julien's Chef Serge Knapp, Seger learned true, unbridled passion in the kitchen. Seger was also a general manager at TRU, Chicago’s fine dining restaurant run by world-renowned chefs Rick Tramonto and Gale Gand. At the French Laundry, Seger learned Thomas Keller's religious devotion to sourcing the finest ingredients and painstakingly processing them to produce the ultimate flavor. Now at Nacional 27, he has adopted Chef Randy Zweiban's intense boldness of flavor that still maintains balance and elegance.
Adam combines his rich culinary exposure with influences from world-class mixology mentors, including Dale 'King Cocktail' Degroff, Master Mixologist Francesco Lafranino (Bacardi-Martini world champion) and the late Max Allen Jr. (1997 International Bartender of the Year-Lausanne, Switzerland) to create his distinctive cocktails.
Earlier in his career, Adam served as the Director of Restaurants at Louisville's Seelbach Hilton and AAA Five Diamond Oakroom. While there he founded (and still owns) Sour Mash Bourbon Bread Company, which produces gourmet bread, biscuit and pancake mix from spent Bourbon mash.
A graduate of Cornell University's School of Hotel Administration, Seger has been featured in Cigar Aficionado, Wine Spectator, The New York Times, and Sante Magazine. He has been dubbed a “Spirits Guru” by Food & Wine and Fast Company and a “Beverage Guru” by Wine & Spirits. He has been featured on the TV Food Network and had a regular feature on Fox News in the Morning in Louisville. Seger’s Kentucky Long Shot was named the official cocktail of the 1998 Breeder's Cup, and his El Corazon at Nacional 27 was named one of the best drinks in Chicago by Time-Out Chicago.
Seger, who also serves as General Manager and Sommelier of Nacional 27, passed the Advanced Exam of the Court of Master Sommeliers on his first attempt. He is the co-founder of Chicago Blind Tasters, a group of sommeliers from TRU, Charlie Trotter's and NoMi dedicated to preparing each other for the holy grail of wine, the Master Sommelier accreditation.