Hamlet & Ghost is a contemporary craft cocktail bar built on a colorful past. We blend one part speakeasy, two parts modern cocktail bar, and a dash of ambiance—and aim to put you at ease, delight you with flavors, and deliver an understated and relaxing experience.
Our location at 24 Caroline Street in downtown Saratoga Springs was once a feed and grain store in the 1870s. It became a hardware store during Prohibition—an alleged facade to a hidden gambling spot within. Today, Hamlet & Ghost honors the historical role of the bar or tavern as a central community gathering spot.
Brendan Dillon leads Hamlet & Ghost's operations. He is a native Saratogian and was a central figure behind the bar for five years at Max London’s Restaurant & Bar. Brendan’s other hospitality experience includes Verde Restaurant at Stratton Mountain in Vermont as well as several other Saratoga establishments. Brendan's journey into craft cocktails began at a bartending course taught by Gary Regan -- otherwise known as "The Cocktail Godfather".
Dennis Kiingati concerns himself with the taste and experience of spirits at the bar. That's a fancy way of saying he drinks a lot. He has also perfected the art of holding up a bar with his elbow and forearm which has proven helpful in this new endeavor. His contributions to the project have fallen tragically short in the areas of manners, social graces and sense of style, but everyone seems to kind of like him anyway. Must be the accent.
Michele Hunter - With culinary experiences that have spanned her entire lifetime, Chef Michele Hunter has now landed as the executive chef at Hamlet & Ghost. Having early on success in her career with baking competitions that took her all over the world, Hunter’s professional trajectory was well established as she entered The Culinary Institute of America. After honing her skills at the CIA, Hunter took a position as sous chef at the French restaurant, Chef Nous Bistro, in Lee, Mass. where she helped prepare their entirely scratch-made, seasonal menu. From
there she moved on to the highly acclaimed Yono's & DP Brasserie in Albany where she supported both restaurants as pastry chef. Hunter eventually moved on to establish her own wholesale bakery, Sifted Bakeshop, where she supplied numerous coffee shops and other small businesses in the Albany area. Most recently, Hunter was the executive pastry chef at The Adelphi Hotel, supporting restaurants the Blue Hen, Morrissey’s as well as the restaurant groups’ neighboring property, Salt & Char. Constantly looking for inspiration, Hunter is an avid cookbook collector and frequents the local farmers market sourcing only the freshest ingredients for her recipes. “It’s extremely rewarding to be able to wake up every day excited about something and having it not only as my career but as a hobby,” said Hunter. “We can all better ourselves a little bit every day. Keeping myself challenged on a daily basis is what helps me grow.”